Hello, Columbus: Double-Dose of New Roth Announced

The subjects of Philip Roth’s next two novels have just been announced. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt says it will release The Humbling this fall and Nemesis in 2010, Roth’s 30th and 31st books.

According to the publisher, The Humbling is about an aging stage actor whose life is changed by “a counterplot of unusual erotic desire.” Nemsis takes place in Newark, a common setting in Roth’s work, during a polio outbreak in 1944.

Roth, who has won two National Book Awards among many other honors, has frequently explored the issues of modern Jewish-American identity and male promiscious instincts in his writing, generating great controversy early in his career.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of his debut, Goodbye, Columbus. He is most famous for Portnoy’s Complaint (1969) and a string of novels featuring alter-ego Nathan Zuckerman, though more recent novels such as American Pastoral and The Plot Against America have also been highly regarded.

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