In the Beauty of the Lilies

Updike, John

Alfred A. Knopf, 1996

p. 340

An example of John Updike’s virtuoso character description follows: “He was tall and pale and wet-lipped and made to look even more cretinous by the green plastic sun visor and the plaid Bermuda shorts . . . The man was young but old enough to know better. His shoulders and arms were sunburned pink, his eyes were pale and apologetic, and she recognized something in him, some fallen distinction: he had a sheepish stale scent of downscaled expectations, of genetic washout.” “He was a bit on the 'whey-faced' side of things.”