John Updike is dead at 76. He has always been my favorite American novelist.
Michio Kakutani captures some of the reasons why in her remembrance:
"It is as a novelist who opened a big picture window on the American middle class in the second half of the 20th century, however, that he will be best remembered."
"In his most resonant work, Mr. Updike gave “the mundane its beautiful due,” as he once put it, memorializing the everyday mysteries of love and faith and domesticity with extraordinary nuance and precision."
"In Kodachrome-sharp snapshots, he gave us the 50’s and early 60’s of suburban adultery, big cars and wide lawns, radios and hi-fi sets, and he charted the changing landscape of the 70’s and 80’s, as malls and subdivisions swallowed up small towns and sexual and social mores underwent a bewildering metamorphosis."