01 April 2009

Review: Here is New York

Here is New York Here is New York by E.B. White

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars

New York today is the same as New York of 1948 but also SO different. I didn't fully get the geography, but that's because I don't venture past my set paths (neighborhood downtown, church uptown and some regular tourist spots in between). But that was also a point E.B. White made in this slim book - basically an essay about the city.

I read this paragraph aloud to Shawn:
"New York is nothing like Paris; it is nothing like London; and it is not Spokane multiplied by sixty or Detroit multiplied by four. It is by all odds the loftiest of cities. It even managed to reach the highest point in the sky at the lowest moment of the depression. The Empire State Building shot twelve hundred and fifty feet into the air when it was madness to put out as much as six inches of new growth."
This gives me hope in this time of our new depression (in more ways than one, I'm afraid) - and how beautiful is that writing? I completely agree with the jacket's description of White's style: "a pure and plainspoken literary style: his writing was characterized by whit, sophistication, optimism and moral steadfastness." I mean, the man was responsible for "Elements of Style," so he knows what he's doing.

And he's writing about my city (well actually I'm just borrowing it).

I think I'll pass along this copy to my Gran, since it's written about New York around the time/just after the time she visited my Grandpa when he was stationed here.

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2 comments:

Sydney said...

Let's not forget he is responsible also for, and perhaps more famous for Charlotte's Web! Whatta guy.

Anonymous said...

Are you kidding me?


Spokane rocks!!!!!


I mean, "Vision Quest" was filmed there... and Madonna, well she rocked the house with "Crazy For You" from the soundtrack of that one.

You could stay at the Ridpath, or the Davenport, and dine at one of the fast food joints on the street that runs parallel to the freeway.

There's Shadle Park High School, and Gonzaga University, Sprague Street, and Division Street, along with a suburb called Opportunity (not to mention Medical Lake).

How could NYC even pretend to be "Spokane times 60"?

For the love...