John Cheever: Contribution as American Novelist

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      John Cheever (1912-1982) has been often called a ‘novelist of man elegant, suggestive short stories’ which scrutinize the New York business world through its effects on the businessmen, their wives, children, and friends. He was born in Quincy, Massachusetts, and educated at Thayer Academy. Much of his fiction deals with humorously and compassionately with the spiritually and emotionally impoverished life in materially affluent communities.

      Cheever, first novel The Wap shot Chronicle (1957), own the National Book Award. In 1965, he received the Howells Medal for Fiction from the National Academy of Arts and letters. His other novels are The Wap shot Scandal (1964), Bullet Park (1969), Falconer (1977), Noh, What a Paradise it Seems (1982). His Chekovian stories many of which appeared originally in The New Yorker and The New Republic, were collected in The Way Some People Live: A Book of Short Stories (1943), The Enormous Radio and Other Stories (1953), Stories (1956), The Housebreaker of Shady Hill and Other Stories (1958), Some Places, Place, and Things that Will Not Be Appeared in My Next Novel (1961). A wry, melancholy, and never quite quenched but seemingly hopeless desire for passion or metaphysical certainty lurks in the shadows of Cheever’s finely drawn Chekhovian tales. The World of Apples (1973) followed. His titles reveal his characteristic nonchalance, playfulness, and irreverence and hint at his subject matter. Cheever also published several novels. The last of the novels was largely autobiographical.

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