The Big Clock by Kenneth Fearing - September Meetup (Silver Spring)

Our book for September 2013 in Silver Spring is The Big Clock by the American poet, novelist, and founding editor of the Partisan Review, Kenneth Fearing.

In this thriller, George Stroud is a hard-drinking, tough-talking, none-too-scrupulous writer for a New York media conglomerate that bears a striking resemblance to Time, Inc. in the heyday of Henry Luce. One day, before heading home to his wife in the suburbs, Stroud has a drink with Pauline, the beautiful girlfriend of his boss, Earl Janoth. Things happen. The next day Stroud escorts Pauline home, leaving her off at the corner just as Janoth returns from a trip. The day after that, Pauline is found murdered in her apartment.  Janoth knows there was one witness to his entry into Pauline’s apartment on the night of the murder; he knows that man must have been the man Pauline was with before he got back; but he doesn’t know who he was. Janoth badly wants to get his hands on that man, and he picks one of his most trusted employees to track him down: George Stroud, who else?

How does a man escape from himself? No book has ever dramatized that question to more perfect effect than The Big Clock, a masterpiece of American noir.

The Big Clock has been adapted into film twice.  The 1948 version starred Ray Milland and the 1987 version starred Kevin Costner.


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  • Stephanie S.

    I had fun, but the book selection was short, not enough to discuss.

    September 19, 2013

    • Kate E.

      maybe more like when we disagree about the book :)

      1 · September 20, 2013

    • Brandon A.

      The book fell into that nasty "everyone liked it but had no broader themes" issue. I agree with Kate - we need a book where we can drop the gloves and debate.

      September 20, 2013

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