Bech: A Book

Quick Reference

Novel by John Updike, published in 1970. Bech Is Back (1982), a sequel, presents the author in his fifties breaking out of a writer's block to create a best seller but no happier or more personally fulfilled.

In seven episodes presented in the guise of lectures with a spurious bibliography, the work reveals the literary and personal life of Henry Bech, a distinguished Jewish author of New York. Revelatory incidents include Bech's travels in the 1960s as a kind of cultural ambassador in Russia and Eastern Europe, his visit as a lecturer to adulatory pupils at a girls' school, his diverse romantic affairs, his difficulties in writing as he ages, and his ultimate enshrinement as a major American author.

Subjects: Literature.

Reference entries

John Updike (1932—2009) American novelist, poet, and short-story writer