As I mentioned in the post on my experience with exactness, Wikipedia said that Malamud did not write profoundly. While this might seem like an insult, this is actually what I like most about Malamud’s writing. He excels at writing a great story.
On the first part of the blog I wrote that I preferred linear stories that are read for pleasure, just like a good bike ride. The Assistant does this perfectly. The story is incredibly enjoyable to read as you connect with realistic characters and an interesting, yet realistic plot. The story is frequently in motion, yet moves ahead rationally, without unbelievable coincidences or unrealistic events.
Calvino’s emblem for quickness was a horse. He chose a horse because it gets a person to their destination, or the end of the story, quickly. Malamud’s story is not necessarily quick. It an average length novel, at just under 300 pages. However, the story never lingers or stalls, which I believe is what Calvino was talking about. Malamud successfully tells a story that is constantly moving forward and unveiling new details and events. Malamud’s stories are also told with use of lots of dialogue. Almost every page is loaded with conversations between two characters.