The Last Gentleman: A Novel
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Will Barrett is a 25-year-old wanderer from the South living in New York City, detached from his roots and with no plans for the future, until the purchase of a telescope sets off a romance and changes his life forever.
The sentient engineer, who had been having trouble with his expression today, now felt his own lips come together in a triumphant fit. Perhaps he should be an actor! “You’re here for the festival, the, ah, morality play,” said the engineer to demonstrate his returning memory. “Yes,” said the pseudo-Negro. “Do you know the sheriff here?” “Yes,” said the engineer. They were standing at the bar under a ballroom globe which reflected watery specters of sunlight from the glass bricks. The
him to!—“and I want you to come down with me.” “Yes sir. And then?” “Jamie likes you. He dudn’t like anybody else at home but he likes you. (He likes Sutter, but that sapsucker—never mind.) He’s been up here four years and he’s smart as a whip about some things but he doesn’t know enough to come out of the rain about some others. He can’t drive a car or shoot a gun! You know what he and Kitty do at home? Nothing! Sit in the pantry and pick their noses.” “How do you know I won’t do the same
$25,000. The counselor had written two sentences: (1) Make a list of your problems, numbering them in the order of priority. (2) Devote all your time, one day, one month, however long it takes, to disposing of one problem at a time. Then go to the next. Simple? Yes. But as a result this executive is now president of the world’s third largest corporation and draws a salary of $400,000 a year. It was no more nor less than true. You do things by doing things, not by not doing them. No more
stories, especially the sort which, answering a need of the Anglo-Saxon soul, depict the hero as perfectly disguised or perfectly hidden, holed up maybe in the woods of Somerset, actually hiding for days at a time in a burrow of ingenious construction from which he could notice things, observe the farmhouse below. Englishmen like to see without being seen. They are by nature eavesdroppers. The engineer could understand this. He unlimbered the telescope and watched a fifty-foot Chris-Craft beat
said Rita listlessly. “Rita,” said Sutter in the same mild temper which the engineer had not yet put down to ordinary friendliness or pluperfect malice, “what do you really care what happens to Jimmy?” “I care.” “Tell me honestly what difference it makes to you whether Jimmy lives or dies.” The engineer was shocked but Rita replied routinely. “You know very well there is no use in my answering you. Except to say that there is such a thing as concern and there is such a thing as preference for