Alan Earney, March 23, 1965

From Project Mailer
142 Columbia Heights
Brooklyn 1, New York
March 23, 1965

Dear Alan,

Let me just send you a copy directly of An American Dream, you’re certainly welcome to it, and I’ll call Grace Bechtold and ask her to hold off on buying one for you.

As for the rest, the reviews have gone oddly on the book. About half have been poor, the other half quite good, but the poles are extreme, everything from “the most important novel written since the war” to “the worst literary hoax of the century.” But indeed, as you can guess, I did like the Times review.[1]

Best for now,
This page is part of
An American Dream Expanded.


  1. The Times’ review was written by Conrad Knickerbocker and appeared on 14 March 1965. Three of the most positive reviews were by Joan Didion in National Review on 20 April 1965, by John W. Aldridge in Life on 19 March 1965, and by Leo Bersani in the Partisan Review, fall 1965. The reviews of the novel did split fairly evenly in the major periodicals, but those in smaller publications across the country were three or four to one, negative to positive.