Title: Popular

Author: Charles Bukowski

Translator: Soroush Taeb Choobari

Publisher: Ambassador Pen

Subject: American stories

Age category: Adult

Cover: Paperback

Number of pages: 168

Language: Farsi



Popular is the latest book by Charles Bukowski, an American author born in Germany. He had a German mother and an American father. Bukowski died a few months after the book was published. The volume of Bukowski’s literary writings is enormous, but Bukowski is more of a poet than a novelist.

He has written thousands of hymns, hundreds of short stories and several novels. The editor-in-chief of the Times has called Charles Bukowski “the queen of poets in lower America.” But in fact, they are the biggest admirers of European Bukowski. For example, Jean-Paul Sartre and Jean Genet have named him the greatest American poet.
Bukowski began his writing career with short stories. A few years later he started composing poetry. He started writing novels in 1970. Previously, he worked for a living in the post office. At the suggestion of the director of a publishing house, he quits his job and starts writing novels. At the request of Martin, the publishing director, Bukowski wrote a novel so that his hundred-dollar salary would not be cut.

Bukowski lived a hard and hard life almost all of his 73-year-old life, and he gives a glimpse of that hard life in his autobiographical book, The Ham Sandwich.

On the back cover of the popular novel is a part of the text of the book:
“The next day I was back in the office again. I felt useless and if I wanted to be honest I would be upset about everything. Neither I was going to get anywhere nor the whole world. We were all just wandering around and waiting for death. In the meantime We also did small things to fill in the blanks.

Some of us did not even do these small things. We were part of the plants. me too. I just do not know what kind of plant I was. “I felt like a turnip.”

This novel is considered the best novel by Charles Bukowski. Bukowski, who has struggled with death over and over again, while writing a popular novel, suddenly realizes that he has leukemia, and no doubt his view of death in this book is influenced by his illness.
In the popular novel, he, like most of his works, deals with poverty and living in low-income neighborhoods. What catches the reader’s eye before reading is the phrase to which Bukowski dedicated the book: “Dedication to bad writing.”
The original name of the book is pulp. Pulp is told to yellow newspapers and magazines that it has nothing to do with popularity, but the book’s translator, Peyman Khaksar, takes inspiration from the name pulp fiction and chooses the title. The translator explains the title of the book in the introduction:

The original name of this book is Pulp. Pulp is a junk magazine that is usually printed on straw paper.
It also means vulgar or market. For example, the correct translation of Pulp Fiction – Quentin Tarantino’s film – is a vulgar story that the Iranian taste has made popular. Following the same taste, I carefully translated the pulp.

Popular is the life story of a detective named Nikki Belane who, contrary to expectations, is not very smart. A detective who, if he did not have these qualities, would not have had a place in Bukowski’s novel.
At the beginning of the story, Blanc is looking for a person named “Celine” at the behest of the “Lady of Death”. Celine is a French writer who died a few years ago, but the Lady of Death insists that Blanc find her.

Meanwhile, the Lady of Death is introduced to the reader with a very strong characterization that follows Blanc throughout the story. When the head of the Lady of Death is found, Blanc thinks he is dying, perhaps the same view that Bukowski had of death, manifested in the form of Blanc’s character.

Blanc is also in charge of several other cases. For example, he seeks to uncover a case of adultery. Or he’s looking for something nicknamed the Red Sparrow, Detective Blanc’s last and foremost riddle, which also refers to Black Sparrow Publishing, which suggests that Bukowski quit his job at the post office and just write.
Blanc is a desperate detective, he hates people, and he thinks that people put all the base tricks together. In one part of the book, he walks down the street and counts the number of idiots around him to get home! Nikki Blanc believes that:

There is always someone to ruin a day. Of course, if he did not intend to destroy your whole life.

Blanc is a strange man, even his dreams are strange. His friend calls him crazy, because in the coffins he looks for space creatures that are hidden in the corpses of the dead, and…

The story is full of short and thought-provoking sentences, sometimes it has a very good sense of humor and sometimes it is quite bitter. The plot is simple but profound, and the dialogues, while simple, make the audience think.
Maybe Bukowski wrote a popular book to entertain with in the last moments of his life. According to some critics, Bukowski has a more negative public view than his other books.
Many consider him a “pessimistic” writer as a whole, but Bukowski is a “realist,” and this is quite evident in his work. Bukowski achieves inner peace by writing, which certainly will not be possible with negative thinking or attitude; As it is clearly mentioned in a part of the book of poetry, burning in water, drowning in fire:
Writing is the latest psychiatrist
God is the most merciful of all gods
Writing kills death, it does not leave
And writing laughs
On himself
On suffering

It is the last expectation
The latest interpretation
It’s all about writing

Bukowski is ugly in life and in his writings, or something like that, he has a mouth, he loves to drink alcohol, he does a lot of useless things, he avoids people, and he has a lot of other nonsense in him. But with all this, Bukowski shows his reality.

He does not worry about the judgments of others and does not seek to appear under any circumstances. In fact, he does not care the least for others, and it is this fact that makes him so attractive.

The literature that Bukowski uses in his collection of works is a strange and special literature of his own. He was not afraid to use words, he was correct in addressing his concerns, he wrote but sharply and explicitly, his pen was critical and there were traces of disgust in his writings.
For this reason, it was criticized by many writers and analysts. But with this particular style, which has been called “dirty realism”, it became very popular. His books have been translated into dozens of different languages ​​and he is considered one of the most influential writers of his time.
In general, it can be said that there are two categories of people in dealing with Bukowski’s writings: people who love his writings and people who have no connection with his writings at all. The popular novel, in my opinion, which is part of the first category, is a wonderful book in the beautiful and special style of Bukowski. A novel that is full of writings that overwhelm you and many sentences of the smell of death can be felt.

In the popular novel, we are on the side of a detective who is dissatisfied with both the world around him and the world within him. We are on the side of a detective who considers himself a turnip and considers the people of this world sad and depressed. The image on the cover of the novel is also a pistol that is mentioned many times in the novel.
This pistol is in fact the power of Detective Blanc, who turns to it wherever and in any situation when he feels threatened or wants to prove his superiority. Seven arrows that are sometimes used and sometimes do not take the lives of his space victims!
Sentences from the popular book
I was talented. I mean, I am. Sometimes I look at my hands and think I could be a great pianist. Or something else. But what have my hands done? They scratched one place, wrote checks, tied shoelaces, pulled siphons, and so on. I have forbidden my hands. As well as my mind

What I can tell you is that there are billions of women living on earth. it’s true? Some of them are good. Many of them are very good. But sometimes nature uses all its tricks to make a woman special, an incredible woman, I mean you look at her but you can not believe it. All his movements are like a beautiful wave and perfect. Like mercury, like a snake.

You see his ankle, his arm or his knee. All of them are intertwined in a perfect and glorious whole. With smiling and beautiful eyes, a happy mouth and lips that seem to be waiting every moment to laugh at your helplessness. This is how women know how to dress. Their hair burns the air.
We waited and waited. All of us. Didn’t the doctor know that one of the things that drives a person crazy is waiting? People have been waiting all their lives. They were waiting to live, they were waiting to die. They waited in line to buy toilet paper. They waited in line for money, and if there was no money, they went to longer queues. You waited for him to fall asleep and then you waited for him to wake up.

You waited to get married and then you waited for a divorce. You waited for the rain and then waited for it to stop. You waited to eat, and when you were full, you waited until it was time to eat again. You waited in the psychiatrist’s office with the rest of the psychiatrists and did not know if you were one of them.

Problems and suffering are the only things that keep a man alive. Or maybe avoid problems and suffering. It is a full-time job in itself. Sometimes you do not feel comfortable sleeping. The last dream I had was sleeping under an elephant.
Overall, I did not have a bad show in my life. I had not slept in the streets at night. Of course, they were all good people sleeping on the street. They were not stupid, they just did not meet the needs of the time organization. Needs that were constantly changing.

It was an ominous conspiracy. If you could sleep in your own bed at night, it would be a valuable victory for the powers that be. I was lucky, but some of the moves I made were not without thought. The whole world was really scary, and sometimes my heart burned for all the people who lived in it.

Hell. I took out the vodka and drank a sip. Most of the best parts of life have been when you did nothing and sat down and thought about life. I mean, for example, you realize that everything is meaningless, then you come to the conclusion that not much can be meaningless. Because you know it’s meaningless, and your very awareness of meaninglessness gives it almost meaning. Do you know what I mean? Optimistic pessimism.
I have all the sorrow of the world in my heart and I am sitting on a chair and the fifth glass is next to me. I did not turn on the TV. I have come to the conclusion that when a person is in a bad mood, this bastard only makes the person worse. A handful of empty faces that come and go behind me and not all. Fools behind idiots, idiots who are sometimes famous.

I asked, “How can you bitches be so insensitive?” “It’s simple, this is how we came into the world,” Johnny said.

The popular book can be called the best novel by Charles Bukowski. In this work, Bukowski has tried to show the emptiness of modern man as much as possible by using bitter humor.

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