Reviews of V.

November 14, 2007 - Polytechnic Online - Max Canaday: Thomas Pynchon writes insane books. That is, the books themselves will not exhibit psychotic qualities and attack your family, but rather they tell dozens of stories at once, all involving somewhat insane, eccentric characters with varying degrees of impulsiveness and detachment from the world and culture around them. This, combined with a structure and style that is equally unique, dark, sarcastic, and humorous, makes for an interesting read. V. is Pynchon’s first novel, and it debuts this definitive (if “wild” is definitive) writing style which he would retain and develop further for his future works.

April 21, 1963 - New York Times - George Plimpton: "The identity of V., what her many guises are meant to suggest, will cause much speculation. What will be remembered, whether or not V. remains elusive, is Pynchon's remarkable ability — which includes a vigorous and imaginative style, a robust humor, a tremendous reservoir of information (one suspects that he could churn out a passable almanac in a fortnight's time) and, above all, a sense of how to use and balance these talents. True, in a plan as complicated and varied as a Hieronymus Bosch triptych, sections turn up which are dull — the author backing and filling, shuffling the pieces of his enormous puzzle to no effect — but these stretches are far fewer than one might expect."

March 15, 1963 - Time Magazine: "Pursuing V., the author leads a phantasmagoric tour through the dream country of the past in a series of darkly illumined flashbacks. At one point, V. is in Florence in the midst of fathomless political conspiracies; at another, she is in South West Africa during the brutal repression of the natives during the '20s. All clues finally lead to Valletta, where V., disguised as the Bad Priest, is injured in a World War II air raid and is disassembled by a band of children: her glass eye is stolen; her false feet of amber and gold, with veins in intaglio are removed; a sapphire is dug from her navel."

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