Tag Archives: novella

The Woman Who Wouldn’t – Gene Wilder

Yes, that Gene Wilder. How could I resist reading a book by one of my favorite comedians? (If you never saw it – “The Frisco Kid.” Netflix it, I promise.) I couldn’t resist at the library, and the subject matter seemed innocuous enough. Two people meet and fall in love at a mental asylum. Sound familiar, anyone?

Anyway, this was more of a novella, and while it didn’t hurt my brain to read like, let’s say, an Ethan Hawke literary foray – I am not entirely sure why it was written. The plot is this: Early 1900’s, violinist did some crazy things during a performance. He is sent to some sort of wellness spa in the Black Forest. He meets and befriends Anton Chekhov (who the book is dedicated to) who is suffering from consumption. He gets a thing for this Belgian woman who is dying of stomach cancer. They court. Have an awkward sex scene (awkwardness compounded by the idea that my Gene wrote the word “penis”). Against his better judgment, he falls in love. They get married. Her cancer disappears when she gets pregnant. He is still a little crazy. They leave for American. Chekhov dies. The End.

That’s it. From what I can tell, I didn’t leave anything out. There was no real subtext or mini-plots or … anything. They liked to drink wine, very cold. That was as much color as I could get out of the story. I just can’t tell why this was written or what I am supposed to do with this. Odd.

I do want to read his autobiography though. Hopefully he doesn’t mention the word “willy.”

(Yeah, I read two books yesterday. I couldn’t but the autism book down, and I knew I was going to the library today, and this book was more of a novella than a novel.)


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