A Sport and a Pastime: A Novel by James Salter

By James Salter

"As approximately excellent as any American fiction I know," is how Reynolds rate (The ny Times) defined this vintage that has been a favourite of readers, either right here and in Europe, for nearly 40 years. Set in provincial France within the Sixties, it's the intensely carnal story--part stunning truth, half feverish dream --of a love affair among a footloose Yale dropout and a tender French lady. there's the noticeable and the unseen--and pages that burn with an extraordinary intensity.

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Additional info for A Sport and a Pastime: A Novel

Example text

And the blackest color is behind your eyes. I will never make a map of anything. 27 I will never stop making lifesize maps of the holding cell you make for me in your bad hopes. I was eating some cereal and one of the marshmallows stuck to my lip and then it fell off and went beneath the couch and I am not going to look for it I think I am going to leave it there alongside the muscles I use to hold up my eyelids yeah man. Fail in public like a petty motherfucker champion. Fail and let it make you hard.

When there’s nothing left to say I will go to sleep and you will never hear from me again. The moment I have gained some importance in your life I will be gone—that’s natural. Yesterday I saw a squirrel run out into the street and a car ran it over. The squirrel kind of tried to run away but just fell down. Then the squirrel twitched once, like it was doing a sit-up. Then it was still. I’m glad I saw that because otherwise I would’ve had nothing 30 to think about while I was sitting on the train this morning, waiting to twitch once, then be still.

More of my time is spent thinking about how I could die at any moment rather than setting goals and achieving those goals. And my goal is to be found in someone’s pool. Being dead will be the easiest thing I do. I am not accomplishing anything—my feet are shovels and all my sperm are tailless. Is good feeling. 17 THE NAP At the grocery store today I saw a very huge woman on a motorized vehicle. There were kids running circles around her. When I got outside with my groceries there was snow falling and I knew the snow was disappearing when it hit the ground.

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