Gerald Jay Goldberg





Edition History:

Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, NY, 1968.
(Jacket design by Milton Glaser)

Ballantine Books (paperback edition), NY, 1972.

The two young Ivy League heroes of this novel invade the Old World in quest of the American dream. Matching their wits, energy, and single-minded ambition against the refined decadence of the continent, they cut a lively picaresque swath across France and Spain. Along the way, they encounter an amusing array of beauties and eccentrics, French countesses and ex-Nazi doctors, Tout Paris and Spain’s greatest matador, Del Monte. This is the Jamesian “International Theme” turned on its head and played in a bright major comic key.


--A rogue’s tale if there ever was one, The National Standard is more fun than Tom Jones, more American-in-Europe than a Henry James novel…and just the sort of thing Mike Nichols ought to make into a rollicking, uproariously funny film. It’s the kind of book you will read the first time just to enjoy the escapades of the heroes. You’ll read it again as you share it with your friends…Call it a masterpiece of fun and satire, but read it and laugh.
The Wichita Eagle and Beacon (August 4, 1968)

--Gerald Jay Goldberg’s National Standard is an utterly delightful book, devastatingly funny and replete with the wittiest dialogue, metaphors and similes I have encountered in many a year of reading, both professionally and personally. In brief, it’s an absolute knockout and I’m still laughing and smiling over my recollections of dozens of passages and individual lines.
William Fadiman
Story editor and Producer at Warner Bros.-Seven Arts and MGM

--The National Standard isn’t about to raise the country’s morale, but should give it some corpulent belly laughs. This is the tale of two American babes hunting in European woods. D.C. Widdemore and Ivan Storch, fresh from college and 4F draft classifications (obtained in a hilarious induction scene) are off to seek their fortune, a la U.S.A…. It’s inventively satiric, the type of humor The Graduate should dig.”
The Kirkus Reviews (April 15, 1968)

--This picaresque odyssey…ranging from the ivied halls of a New England alma mater to France and Spain, gives the author splendid leeway for a satirical look at several soft spots in contemporary American civilization….The humor is earthy, sharp, and has a satiric bite.
Library Journal (May 15, 1968)

--Heller’s Catch-22, Fiedler’s The Second Stone and The Last Jew in America, and Levin’s Gore and Igor have been on the market awhile…The National Standard is funnier: on every page a dozen laughs.
Los Angeles Times (June 16, 1968)

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