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Publisher's Summary

"With the lover everyday life recedes," Roth writes - and exhibiting all his skill as a brilliant observer of human passion, he presents in Deception the tightly enclosed world of adulterous intimacy with a directness that has no equal in American fiction.

At the center of Deception are two adulterers in their hiding place. He is a middle-aged American writer named Philip, living in London, and she is an articulate, intelligent, well-educated Englishwoman compromised by a humiliating marriage to which, in her 30s, she is already nervously half-resigned.

The book's action consists of conversation - mainly the lovers talking to each other before and after making love. That dialogue - sharp, rich, playful, inquiring, "moving", as Hermione Lee writes, "on a scale of pain from furious bafflement to stoic gaiety" - is nearly all there is to this audiobook, and all there needs to be.

©1990 Philip Roth (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"This swift, elegant, disturbing novel...stands at the extreme of contemporary fiction." ( The New York Times Book Review)
" Deception is itself deceptive, as elegant and ingenious as anything in The Ghost Writer or The Prague Orgy." ( New Republic)
"A fiendishly clever piece of work...an amazing feat....He's invented the purest speech, the most convincing cadences, of any American novelist." ( Hudson Review)

What listeners say about Deception

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Pillow Talk

How could you be humiliated by something that isn't so? It is not myself. It is far from myself--it is a play, it's a game, it is an impersonation of myself! Me ventriloquizing myself. Or maybe it's more easily grasped the other way around--everything here is falsified except me. Maybe it's both. But both ways or either way, what it adds up to, honey, is homo ludens!"
- Philip Roth, Deception

Roth is experimenting with dialogue. Think of this book as the pre- and post- coital conversations between a man and his mistress, interspersed with dialogues with other women and his wife. The narrator is named Philip Roth, just to confuse things (the first time Roth uses his own name and not some stand-in like Portnoy, Kepesh, or Zuckerman) even more. To complicate matters, Roth also throws in a lot of REAL accounts (trips to Czechoslovakia, etc) that most certainly are more true than fiction. He pushes the boundaries of fiction to the point where the snake indeed eats the tail of the snake. I'm just not sure if the head is fiction or the tail. And I'm sure Roth (both the ficitional Roth and the real) would have it no other way.

6 people found this helpful

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Absolutely marvelous.

This is the perfect book for audio, and the rendition is pitch perfect. A gem!

1 person found this helpful