In these intellectually dazzling essays, Ozick writes about Saul Bellow and Henry James, William Gaddis and Primo Levi. She observes the tug-of-war between written and spoken language and the complex relation between art's contrivances and its moral truths. She has given us an exceptional book that demonstrates the possibilities of literature even as it explores them.
"As an essayist, Cynthia Ozick is a very good storyteller. Her arguments are plots...They twist and turn, digress, slow down and speed up, surprise with sudden illuminations...She likes to spin and sparkle...Insight, feeling, and the writer's art come together."--The New York Times Book Review