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The Walter Tevis Renaissance

Gin, bourbon, valium, weed, horse racing, nine-ball, poker, pills, petroleum, chess, sex, television, losing, winning—the novels of Walter Tevis are queasy with addictions big and little. Most are hazardous. Some are deadly. A few seem nice enough, but nice is usually booby-trapped somehow, so that a character can’t enjoy, say, a game of pool without going on a bender a page later. These are novels without rising or falling action; they move to the jerkier rhythms of recovery and relapse. Read more

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