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Novel by John Cheever, published in 1957 and granted a National Book Award in 1958. Based in part on Cheever's adolescence in New England, the novel takes place in a small Massachusetts fishing village and relates the breakdown of both the Wapshot family and the town. Part One focuses on Leander, a gentle ferryboat operator harried by his tyrannical wife and his eccentric sister; he eventually swims out to sea and never returns. Part Two chronicles the disastrous lives of Leander's sons, Coverly and Moses. Told in a comic rather than a tragic vein, the novel uses experimental prose techniques to convey a nostalgic vision of a lost world. A sequel, The Wapshot Scandal, was published in 1964. --The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature
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ISBN-10:  0679738991
ISBN-13:  978-0679738992
Author:  John Cheever
Publisher:  Vintage
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review by . June 23, 2013
A humanistic novel that depicts the ordinariness of life and of the darkness that lies beneath.
John Cheever's The Wapshot Chronicle, was, for me, an unfortunately underwhelming novel that was beautifully crafted. It was filled with rounded characters, a wonderful and sometimes-not-so sublime plot and filled with elegant Chekhovian descriptions of scenery that were quite picturesque. Yet, there was no knockout punch or wow factor that got a hold of me. The Wapshot Chronicle was, and I hate to say it, mediocre in its conveyance of mediocrity, softened only by occasional winsome humor that …
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