Martin Amis: The Rachel Papers

(4302 words)

The Rachel Papers (1973), Martin Amis's first novel, is a vivid work in which Charles Highway, on the eve of his twentieth birthday, recalls his pursuit, seduction and eventual rejection of Rachel Noyes, the first girl with whom he has ever been in love. The novel is a mixture of Bildungsroman (a novel of personal development or education); a coming-of-age story (a kind of subgenre of the Bildungsroman, focusing on the period in which the protagonist moves from adolescence into maturity); and urban picaresque and postmodern pastiche. Amis takes ample advantage of the new sexual and physiological frankness in fiction which the relaxation of censorship in Britain and the USA had made possible by the 1970s. He f…

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Tredell, Nicolas. "The Rachel Papers". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 10 March 2009
[, accessed 30 June 2015.]