By Frederick Buechner
An extended Day's loss of life is a mid-twentieth-century Jamesian novel that foreshadows a few of the topics in Mr. Buechner's later writing—faith, belief, and the advanced kinfolk of friends and family. the tale follows Tristram Bone, a rotund guy of wealth and "organized rest" yet a failure with girls, and Elizabeth terrible, a wealthy, captivating, and gorgeous widow and Bone's unrequited love curiosity, via a chain of encounters with family and friends, affairs genuine and imagined, gossip, jealousy, and innuendo. We additionally meet Bone's servant Emma and his puppy monkey Simon; the novelist George Motley; the conceited and seductive educational Paul Steitler, Elizabeth's naïve son Lee, and her omniscient mom Maroo.
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Extra info for A long day's dying
Motley had left shortly before. After wandering from one room to another, down some more sagging stone stairs and along a row of cells, she reached a small door through which the priests once had passed who conducted mass in the chapel. She had to stoop slightly to get through it, and found herself directly next to the main altar several minutes after Tristram had left by the larger door at the rear of the room. Like him she had to wait for some minutes before her eyes grew· accustomed to the dim light, and even then she saw things only gradually.
Elizabeth, it was the ,-\-ine," he said. "The wine we had with dinner, the wine we had before dinner, the wine we had after dinner, that makes me have to tell you a story now. It was also the manicurist this morning I think. And that indescribable monastery, where . . " "You will discover," continued Elizabeth, "that I have sent something more than the sum originally proposed, and I shall leave the disposition of the balance entirely within your hands with the one stipulation that you do not .
O," he said. She picked out the letter. "I shall go on with the story," and so he did, as if he did 46 A Long Day's Dying not know it well himself. It became very sad and very complicated and scarcely a story at all, for nothing happened of any consequence. The other suitor whom the king either knew or did not know, whose existence the first suitor only suspected, became more important as he grew more vague. Bone spoke of him as a secret, and as if the secret were that there was another secret which concerned yet another and so on, and so forth, like mirrors reflecting each other into obscure infinity.
A long day's dying by Frederick Buechner