Jerzy Kosiński’s weird afterlife continues with a novelization, but what would he have made of River Ridge?


It began with the observation that “doughnut” economics might put the oligarchy fluffers at One Southern Indiana out of work.

What do you know? Chance the gardener was right, after all.

The gardener in question was a fictional creation of the strange and contradictory Jerzy Kosiński.

And who defines this truth? “Bookmark: Sex, Lies and Jerzy Kosiński.”

Kosiński now resurfaces in a novel about himself.

Thanks for the tip.

Jerzy Kosinski Stars in a Novel About His Own Strange Life, by Benjamin Markovits (NY Times)

By Jerome Charyn
237 pp. Bellevue Literary Press. Paper, $16.99.

You can find him on YouTube talking to David Letterman or Johnny Carson — a celebrity novelist. Although at a certain point Jerzy Kosinski became more than that, or something different: one of those hard-to-place figures, not quite funny but not exactly the butt of the joke either. A professional oddball. Letterman doesn’t quite know what to do with him and treats Kosinski like the weird foreign uncle a well-brought-up young man should be nice to. But Kosinski played other roles too: Holocaust survivor, con man, sex fiend, Hollywood actor, seer, a guy on the make.

Jerome Charyn’s new novel covers much of the usual life story, though not in the usual order …