Saul Karoo is a successful Hollywood script doctor, a fixer of flawed films, He is fifty, overweight, a heavy drinker and chain smoker. He is at an age when things break down, but he has not health insurance. His separation from his wife, Dianah, has become another form of marriage. His relationship with his son, Billy, a college student, is one of pure avoidance. He cannot free himself from the grip of the powerful producer Jay Cromwell. The unnecessay scenes that he has effortlessly cut from other people's screenplays seem to threaten his own life. But Saul Karoo is the ultimate fixer. He must find an emotional and intellectual solution-yet the one he chooses may in the end prove more deadly than the problems it was intended to solve. Hauntingly human, full of sadness and humor, recognizable in place and time, Karoo is a memorable creation.
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There are far more tragicomic possibilities in the lives of gracelessly aging men than one might suspect, and the list of writers who have taken advantage of them is small but fertile--Mordecai Richler, John Updike, Philip Roth, and Saul Bellow among them. The late Steve Tesich, best known for his original screenplay for Breaking Away, joins this august group with the tale of Saul Karoo, a wealthy, alcoholic Hollywood script doctor plagued by exactly the kind of banal problems that he has ruthlessly edited out of the scripts of others--most notably a fear of intimacy. He meets regularly with his estranged wife Dianah to discuss the academic question of their ever-impending divorce and celebrate the anniversary of their separation. "Tender, deeply felt, full of love, that's the kind of divorce we had in mind... The more we talked about divorce, the more married we seemed." His adopted teenage son, Billy, keeps pushing for more dedicated father-son contact, to Karoo's great discomfort: "I loved Billy, but I was absolutely incapable of loving him in private where it was just the two of us. That was another disease I had... Evasion of privacy. Evasion at all cost of privacy of any kind. With anyone."
A doctor tells Karoo that he's shrinking vertically and swelling horizontally, as if to push the world even further away. But when he signs on to re-cut the last film of dying directorial great Arthur Houseman, he discovers Leila, Billy's natural mother, playing a bit part in the film, and from that moment he's transformed. In a bizarre twist, the unbelievable melodrama that follows from his attempt to engineer happiness from this coincidence is the stuff of a blockbuster script--offered to him, naturally, for the writing. Karoo is bitter and cynical to the core, but the somewhat heavy-handed ending embraces the possibility of redemption even as it delivers the final insult to its unhappy hero.About the Author:
Steve Tesich (September 29, 1942 - July 1, 1996) was a Serbian-American Oscar-winning screenwriter, playwright and novelist. Tesich was born in Yugoslavia (now Serbia), but immigrated to the USA with his family when he was 14 years old. His family settled in East Chicago, Indiana, and Tesich later graduated from Indiana University, where he was a member of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity. He went on to do graduate work at Columbia University, where he also wrote his first plays. After achieving some critical and box office success writing for both stage and screen he died following a heart attack at the age of 53 in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada. In 2005, Serbian Ministry for diaspora established the annual Stojan - Steve Tešić award, to be awarded to the writers of Serbian origin that write in other languages.
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Book Description Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0151002959
Book Description Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0151002959
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97801510029551.0
Book Description Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110151002959
Book Description Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0151002959 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.1048586