Andrew Lytle Thomas H. Landess - Essay

Thomas H. Landess

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

One has to admire the total achievement of [The Velvet Horn]: the broad spectrum of characters, the variety of incident, the beautifully cut details, the shifting levels of language. But inevitably the very richness of structure and texture poses a problem in unity which has proven the undoing of more than one reader. Here, as with Ulysses, the novice is likely to quit early rather than to make that first synthesis which gives him all he needs to continue until the end. And with both novels, in order to make this synthesis it is almost necessary first to grasp the essential heart of the work, the archetypal or universal experience which lies at the core of the action—or, as Mr. Lytle would insist,...

(The entire section is 1131 words.)