Robert Gottlieb’s review of Boris Kachka’s Hothouse: The Art of Survival and the Survival of Art at America’s Most Celebrated Publishing House doubles as a fascinating history of Farrar Straus & Giroux, and a profile of FSG capo Roger Straus. Gottlieb finds plenty to criticize about Kachka’s book (“three hundred and forty-five pages of [Kachka’s overexcited tone] is hard to take”), yet this review really makes one want to read it. Or rather, it makes one want to read Gottlieb’s non-existent memoir about the NYC publishing scene of the ’50s and ’60s.
Some would describe Gottlieb’s review as long but good. At the Mercantile, we say it’s long AND good.
-Norm De Plume