To Whom It May Concern--I was The Green Ray. Now it can be told--the story which many tried to silence, many refused to believe, and many did not want to hear.
In the depths of the Great Depression, the voice of a radio superhero known as The Green Ray entertained America. Forty years later, the man behind the character--two-bit voice actor Ray Green, known to his family as Reuven Agranovsky--is caught in an all-night blackout in the desert town of Mason, New Mexico, where a chain of events is set in motion that forces The Green Ray out of retirement. But at seventy-three, Ray faces a different--and far more terrifying--world.
A wildly inventive, raucously funny novel of heroism, neurosis, and transcendence, Further Adventures was ahead of its time when it was first published fifteen years ago. Like Ray Green himself, it now reemerges in a newly revised "author's cut" for a new generation of readers.
This massive novel shifts from promising delight to annoying didacticism as it tells the epic story of Ray Green, a fictional 1930s radio actor who portrayed The Green Ray, stouthearted protector of truth, justice and all that is best in the American spirit. Ne Reuven Agranovsky (a son of Russian Jewish immigrants), Green continues an obsession with his superhero persona after the show goes off the air in the 1940s. Fink traces Green's quest to make the heart of America larger during the promise of the 1950s, the tumult of the 1960s and 1970s and the greed of the 1980s. Even when all hope seems lost as the novel approaches our time, a suicidal Green decides to go on living. The theme of this first novel by Fink ( Cluck! The True Story of Chickens in the Cinema ) is a compelling one, and its realistic nostalgia has some power. Unfortunately, Fink's style all but debilitates his message. The tale is told in Green's prosaically unsophisticated voice, with key words in nearly every sentence capitalized to indicate their importance. By the end of 600 pages, readers will feel as though they have been beaten about the head with a badly worded inspirational greeting card.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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October 11, 2009
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