The Humbling by Philip Roth, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
A great Roth novel is, like the sex that’s often at the center of it, about as good as it gets. Even a not-so great one is still pretty good. Less narrative-driven (thankfully) than, say,
The Plot Against America
, this tale of an aging actor who thinks he can no longer perform (yes, it’s also a sexual metaphor) is among Roth’s finer, shorter books; like
The Dying Animal, Indignation
, it examines the painful process of aging, physical, emotional, professional, and sexual.
also includes one of the more disturbingly erotic scenes in recent Roth history. (Harcourt, November 2)