Author(s): Linda Rosenkrantz
Friendships are built on chatter, on gossip, on revelations-on talk. Over the course of the summer of 1965, Linda Rosenkrantz taped conversations between three friends (two straight, one gay) on the cusp of thirty vacationing at the beach: Emily, an actor; Vince, a painter; and Marsha, a writer. The result was Talk, a novel in dialogue. The friends are ambitious, conflicted, jealous, petty, loving, funny, sex- and shrink-obsessed, and there's nothing they won't discuss. Topics covered include LSD, fathers, exes, lovers, abortions, S&M, sculpture, books, cats, and of course, each other. Talk was ahead of its time in recognizing the fascination and significance of nonfamily ties in contemporary life. It may be almost fifty years since Emily, Vince, and Marsha spent the season in East Hampton, but they wouldn't be out of place on the set of Girls or in the pages of a novel like Sheila Heti's How Should a Person Be?
Linda Rosenkrantz's laugh-out-loud, lascivious, gossip-soaked hybrid of novel and autobiographical screed is the Girls of the 1960s. Irresistable, irreverent, and intellectualy sharp, Talk is a beach read like no other.
Rosenkrantz and her friends are living a hippie lifestyle before the hippie lifestyle took hold, but they approach it as creative intellectuals...There's a realness to the way they relate to one another and the world. Carolyn Kellogg, "Los Angeles Times" T"alk" gave me a sizzling Warholian window into the smart-mouthed freaky New York scene of the late 1960s. I was overwhelmed by a desire to jump in a time machine. Simon Doonan, author of "The Asylum" The rawest of raw material is hashed over in detail, but with such openness and enthusiasm that one is more delighted and stimulated than embarrassed or shocked. James Leo Herlihy, author of "Midnight Cowboy" The pattern of self-revelation is far from coarse: it is eloquent and convincing, with its insights suddenly stumbled upon, its slender bridges of nervous sympathy that join each private island to the threatening outside world. Norman Shrapnel, "The Guardian" It is sometimes hard to remember just how radical" Talk" was when it was published. Rosenkrantz s innovative process of using transcribed recorded conversation as dialogue introduced a level of reality not unlike the choice to paint from photographs instead of live models. Chuck Close Cool, astringent...something new, something beyond black humor or pop fiction. "The New Republic" Utterly hip, utterly frank, utterly amoral. "New Haven Register" The characters are defined by speech alone, and the talk is of a kind that has been missing from literature...Miss Rosenkrantz s importance as a writer is to have shown, right away in her first book, that exact data can go into a novel without the pressures of conventional plot and character requirements. "Vogue""
Linda Rosenkrantz is an American author of several books of fiction and nonfiction, including Telegram, a history of the telegraphic communication, and her memoir, My Life as a List: 207 Things About My (Bronx) Childhood, and the co-author of Gone Hollywood: The Movie Colony in the Golden Age. She was also the founding editor of Auction magazine, a long-time syndicated columnist, and a founder of the popular baby-naming site Nameberry.com. She currently resides in Los Angeles.