Tuesday, July 20, 2010

HITCH-22 by Christopher Hitchens (2010)

The British-born, recent American, Citizen Hitchens, with his expected shining wit and sharp quill dishes the dirt about himself in this completely engrossing memoir.

I read it slowly to absorb his syntax and his wisdom and his complete lack of preciousness that the genre almost always delivers in saccharine doses.

Where else could you discover that Omar Sharif had been Edward Said's "gym-shoe wielding sadistic head prefect" at boarding school? Or that Nora Ephron thought "Deep Throat" was a non-story because his actual identity (Mark Felt) was far less interesting than the conjectured spooks? Or that Auden and Trotsky lived in the same run-down apartment building in NYC?

What I am most envious of is Hitchens' peerless relationship with longtime amigo and fellow scribbler Martin Amis. Their "friendship has always been perfectly cloudless. It is a love whose month is ever May."

Lucky sods.

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