Books: Woe Is Me


by FREDERICK EXLEY 274 pages. Random House. $7.95.

If ever a successful novel seemed to be its own happy ending, it was Frederick Exley's A Fan's Notes (1968). In a captivating blend of fiction and autobiography, with remarkable humor and pitiless self-scrutiny, Exley, a high school football player turned writer and pressagent, told how his youthful fantasies of athletic and literary glory ripened into alcoholism, two ruined marriages, three stints in state mental institutions. For winters on end, he remembered, all that kept him lurching from Sunday to Sunday...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!