Posts tagged ‘Charlie P’
February 14, 2015
From the chapter “The young harpist”
At age fifty-seven Charlie P fell in love with a twenty year-old Bulgarian harpist entering Juilliard on scholarship. Besides being young and beautiful, she came from a good family, too. Her mother not only taught ethics at the university, but practiced what she preached. Her father discovered the cure for cancer. Her grandfather assassinated both Hitler and Stalin, and what makes these deeds even more remarkable is that he accomplished them before the War. It has been thirty-three years since Charlie P had last been in love. And now this. How lucky could he get. Miracle of miracles. Wonder of wonders. Charlie P never thought it would happen to him again.
On their first meeting, Charlie P wanted to buy the young woman the world. And with an outpouring of generosity that the world has rarely seen, he bought the young woman all of Manhattan as well as the Brooklyn Bridge. And in the wee hours he sneaked off with her to Paris and brought back the Eiffel Tower, too. At the date’s end, for his generosity and kindness, the young woman told him she loved him. But when Charlie P leaned his head forward and pursed his lips, all she gave him was a peck on the cheek. It’s only to be expected, said Charlie P. What else could an old man like myself expect from such a young and beautiful girl. Who comes from a good family, too.
From the chapter “Love is war”
What if the love of his life is not all he made her out to be? What if only for a fleeting second Charlie P opens his eyes and can see?
From the chapter “Do you know the difference…?”
“Do you know the difference between an artist and a businessman?” said Charlie P in one of his many arguments with the young harpist. “I’ll tell you.”
“A businessman is interested in power, lives for power, first and always is power, he’s a power monger. No amount of money or power is enough for him. Only those things tangible and palpable, of flesh and blood reality, those things he can touch, smell, see and hear, interest him. To obtain those things he instrumentalizes and manipulates the world. Accumulation, more and more is his sole aim and credo. His raison d’être and clarion call.”
Charlie P pauses for a deep breath. When he continued his voice had changed noticeably.
“The artist on the other hand pursues truth and meaning, and the making of all things beautiful. He has no use for the tangible and the palpable. The functional and the material. He’s sensitive and delicate and cannot pass a glowing sun or a pale moon or a patch of cloud or a sheet of rain without stopping to gaze in awe and wonder. He lives in the clouds with only the starry constellations spinning in his head.”
“Just as I thought,” said the young harpist. “I know the difference.”
“Yes. And I prefer the businessman.”
January 1, 2015
“…wrought with dark humour and a multitude of literary, philosophical and psychological references. The trilogy is an essential read for anyone who enjoys a challenge: predictable neither in content nor in form, CENTRAL PARK WEST TRILOGY is not your average novel.”
Full review here: http://www.palatinate.org.uk/?p=52129
Richard Kalich’s book is on promotion in the UK and Australia. Don’t miss it!
November 28, 2014
From “The Party” by Richard Kalich:
“The entire affair was catered by the world’s greatest chefs, and platters of sumptuous foods were served by geishas in kimonos and men in black. Champagne flowed like April rain. Every guest was given a token of appreciation for not attending, diamonds and gold; and for those who didn’t wear jewellery, thinking it ostentatious, Picassos from the Blue period. And the entertainment was world class. From the Three Tenors, Nureyev and Fontaine, to rappers and hip-hop. From chart-breakers and the current pop, to has-beens and never-was’s. Fireworks lit up the night sky before, during and after the party. Needless to say, there was something for everybody. For every taste and desire imaginable.”
September 11, 2014
About Charlie P, one of the novels in CENTRAL PARK WEST TRILOGY by Richard Kalich:
“There is little that resembles a plot, nor is there the kinds of tensions elicited by the more ‘conventional’ novel. Yet there is still a world, consistent in its inconsistency, and in that world a life, however unlived. In effect, Charlie P simultaneously asks how little is too little, and how much is too much, to create a coherent, believable narrative.
Charlie P is a carefully wrought novel with a deft sense of humor and a strong awareness of its place in literary discourse. With each answer it prompts new questions; with each added detail, it destabilizes certainty. For all that, readers must have temerity, curiosity and the ability to build on constantly shifting ground – or a willingness to subject themselves to the elements of the indeterminate and the multiple.
Though it is widely agreed that Emerson was right when claiming that ‘a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds,’ the thoughtful and creative manipulation of a sustained consistency can be a challenge to the vastest and deepest of intellects. Richard Kalich is able to effect this type of consistency throughout the whole of Charlie P, an accomplishment to be admired.” – Christopher Leise, Electronic Book Review