Gerald Jay Goldberg





Edition History:

The Dial Press, NY, 1972.
(Jacket design by Wendell Minor)

Stories published originally in slightly different form in following magazines: “The Loving Tongue” and “Kappelman in the Diaspora” in Harper’s Bazaar, “126 Days of Continuous Sunshine” in Iowa Review, “A Sign of Favor” in Shenandoah, “The Education of Martin Fogle” in Art and Literature.

“The Death of Los Angeles,” appeared in Works in Progress, (Selections From the Best in Books to be Published in Coming Months), Number Six, The Literary Guild of America, 1972.


--When his mood is benign, Gerald Jay Goldberg regards the world through skewed lenses and produces wonders: “Martin Fogle was growing up, as in the background his aging parents disappeared into their shoes.” Slightly nutty, but marvelously accurate: this is exactly what the aging parents of a 15-year-old body builder would do. A bit further on in the same story [“The Education of Martin Fogle”] , the reader learns of Martin’s father that “Once an idea occurred to him, he would hold on to it like an umbrella in a high wind.” Not so nutty, but definitely skewed, a vision to be proud of.
John Skow, “Skewed Wonders,”
Time Magazine, (September 25, 1972)

--I feel like a minor character in one of the stories in Gerald Jay Goldberg’s collection, 126 DAYS OF CONTINUOUS SUNSHINE, as I start to write this review. In fact, there are twinges of recognition in quite a few of the characters in these 11 short stories, which I suppose is the best compliment I can pay this talented writer…. Even the least of the stories show virtuosity and the best of them mark a talent of exciting strength. And in the end, we are looking over the shoulder of a writer who has begun to probe with humor and compassion new and exciting territory. There is an artist among us.
Robert Kirsch, “Of Critics and Other Pests,”
Los Angeles Times (August 30, 1972)

--Gerald Jay Goldberg is a talented writer who won well-deserved attention a couple of years ago with a Vermont guignol-novel, THE LYNCHING OF ORIN NEWFIELD. Throughout this collection, he plays close attention to detail. His prose sparkles with well-observed idiosyncrasies.
New York Times Book Review (November 19, 1972)

---In the blinding sunshine of contemporary aridity with no relieving shade, Goldberg’s people either shrivel or expand to attain bizarre gratifications. He explores random points of human insularity with an acute and savage efficiency.
Kirkus Reviews (June 15, 1972)

--Ranks with Thomas Pynchon’s novel, The Crying of Lot 49, in describing California insanity.
Lawrence Rand
Chicago Sun-Times (1972)

--In 1970 Gerald Jay Goldberg published a novel--The Lynching of Orin Newfield--that made quite an impression: it was, simply, a lot of fun to read. Newfield was a Vermont farmer, a magnificent, foul-mouthed old s.o.b. who kicked dogs, seduced widows…Gerald Goldberg brought his characters thundering to life, and his narrative was studded with vivid turns of phrase that came across as organic extensions of a very special sensibility….The best stories in [126 DAYS OF CONTINUOUS SUNSHINE] deal with variants of the “Orin Newfield” type, though the heroes are not defiant non-conformists or rugged individualists. They are just loners, some of them academics and most of them Jews, and all have been playing the game with some success until their lives reach a crisis--and they discover that they haven’t quite understood the rules.
Don Crinklaw
St. Louis Post-Dispatch (September 17, 1972)

--Goldberg’s writing is sharp and evocative, and his dialogue, especially in “The Loving Tongue,” a marvelous story about a loquacious American tourist traveling with his very smart six-year-old son, is delightful.
Publishers Weekly (October 19, 1972)

--If you are forced to choose between short story collections by Gerald Jay Goldberg and John O’Hara, pick the Goldberg book. It has some first-rate writing in it…My favorite among the Goldberg stories is one in which a pushy, gregarious divorcee, Ethel Peterson tries to play matchmaker to a lonely, withdrawn widow, Mrs. Lake….This odd love story is called “The Bach Master,” and it is a natural wonder. Just reading it will make you feel good. The rest of the tales in 126 DAYS OF CONTINUOUS SUNSHINE are right up to the mark, too. Let’s hear it for Goldberg.
Charles Stella
The Cleveland Press (November 17, 1972)

--Goldberg is clearly an extraordinary writer and deserves recognition alongside Thomas McGuane and Barthelme as a leading black humorist and surrealist.
Library Journal (July 1972)

--These stories are sharp, clever, funny. A few, however, are eerie and moving such as “The Mowers”…. Goldberg’s stories are reminiscent stylistically of those by Nathanael West, author of The Day of the Locust. But unlike West’s work, the implicit irony is tempered by the author’s empathy for his characters. Satire doesn’t destroy the underlying humanness of these stories.
Harriet Heyman
Chicago Daily News (September 9-10, 1972)


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