Sometimes when you read Updike you laugh outloud, other times you are going 'wow'. Like yesterday in 'Couples' when they described the local fire chief as the most neurotic man in town, he had a phobia of fire, water and dogs!
From what I can make out Updike is always struggling, always experimenting with the idea of 'the good life' or 'the best life'. Only this struggle does not begin when we are 15 and end when we are 18. No, for Updike it begins the day you are born and it ends the day you die, or maybe you are lucky if you even find an answer by the day you die.