The Last Gentleman (novel)
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
|The Last Gentleman|
First edition cover
|Publisher||Farrar, Straus and Giroux|
|Pages||352 pp (Paperback edition)|
The Last Gentleman is a 1966 novel by Walker Percy. The narrative centers on the character of Williston Bibb Barret, a man born in the Mississippi Delta who has moved to New York City, where he lives at a YMCA and works as a night janitor. Will suffers from a "nervous condition," which causes him to experience fits of déjà vu and amnesiac fugues.
Early in the story, Will meets the Vaughts, a Southern family temporarily living in New York City so that their son, Jamie, can receive medical treatment there. Mr. Vaught invites Will to return to the South with his family and serve as Jamie's caretaker. The novel focusses on the relationship between Will and the Vaughts (particularly with the Vaughts' daughter, Kitty, with whom Will falls in love), and on Will's continuing search for his own identity.
Walker Percy followed the story of The Last Gentleman in The Second Coming.
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