Lisa Schwarzbaum
February 02, 2007 AT 05:00 AM EST

Wish I Could Be There

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Allen Shawn
publisher
Viking
genre
Nonfiction, Memoir

We gave it a C+

Allen Shawn, the author of Wish I Could Be There, is (1) a multiphobic middle-aged man; (2) the son of legendary New Yorker editor William Shawn; and (3) a composer. In that order, judging from his jittery, brittle mix of the scientifically factual and the personal.

Telling Words
”Overall I believe that the tensions and paradoxes of [my father’s] nature were rather successfully balanced as if in some kind of psychic isometric exercise.”

Lowdown
Diagnosis: borderline autobiographobia.

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