Arnon Grunberg


Perfect teeth

On the plane from New York to Lyon I started reading Updike’s novel “Couples”.
A very entertaining read, sometimes the language is a bit flowery, but it is surprising how effective Updike’s language is when sex is the subject.
This dialogue left me flabbergasted: ‘Piet wanted to weep, to drop fat tears onto her deflated breasts. “Did I feel big enough?” She laughed, displaying perfect teeth, a dentist’s wife. “No,” she said. “You felt shrimpy.”’

Till then “Couples” came across as a naturalistic novel. Would any man after making love to his mistress or his wife for that matter ask: “Did I feel big enough?” Piet is probably not the most sophisticated man ever, but still.
And I don’t know why but the word “shrimpy” reminded me of Nabokov.