Everything is over for Simon Axler, the protagonist of Philip Roth's startling new book. One of the leading American stage actors of his generation, now in his sixties, he has lost his magic, his talent and his assurance. His Falstaff and Peer Gynt and Vanya, all his great roles, 'are melted into air, into thin air'. Following the dark meditations on mortality and endings in Everyman and Exit Ghost, and the bitterly ironic retrospect on youth and chance in Indignation, Roth has written another in his haunting group of late novels. The Humbling is Roth´s thirtieth book.