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Updike’s last poems

Reading about Robin Williams’ death, I wanted to read what writers wrote in their last days, in their illness or old age, when they knew they were about to die. That is how I came across these poems by my favourite writer, John Updike.

Good old writers

Who says old geezers can't write? Some of them die with the sharpest minds. That's certainly true of the literary critic Frank Kermode, who has just died at the age of 90. Reading about his death yesterday, I turned to his essays published in the London Review of Books. You […]

Marry Me: Bittersweet Updike

Can anyone write like John Updike? He could make even adultery lyrical. He does not turn a blind eye to the toll it takes. The lovers are exposed for what they are — cheating on their spouses and neglecting their little children. But Updike's powerful prose captures the irresistible magnetism […]

The Widows of Eastwick

The Widows of Eastwick is a reminder of the extraordinary talent of John Updike. He died last month of cancer at the age of 76. This is his last book, published last year. But this doesn’t read like the work of an old man. It has all the zest for […]

Updike’s Terrorist and adulterers

The Terrorist by John Updike India, not Iran, was the first to ban Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses shortly after it came out in September 1988, reminds the Observer. The then prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s Congress government banned the book under pressure from the opposition Janata Party. Both wanted the […]