Giuseppe Verdi

Nicholas Delbanco ponders the art of lastingness

Nicholas Delbanco ponders the art of lastingness


The Art of Old Age

Nicholas Delbanco

Grand Central: 275 pp., $24.99

Nicholas Delbanco sits on a swivel chair in his second-floor writer's study, his back to the desk, knees bent slightly as he props his feet on the edge of a couch. He exudes energy and warmth, his conversation vibrantly self-aware. Elsewhere in the house his wife, Elena, is packing for a flight they'll be taking in a few hours to visit her father on Martha's Vineyard, so Delbanco says he can only talk for an hour or so. He has places to go, things to do.

Delbanco, whose prodigious writing has won him many honors, including Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts...

EDITION: California | U.S. & World