Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Grab Bag Of New Fiction
Nothing is simple for the men and women in Donald Antrim’s stories. As they do the things we all do—bum a cigarette at a party, stroll with a girlfriend down Madison Avenue, take a kid to the zoo—they’re confronted with their own uncooperative selves. These artists, writers, lawyers, teachers, and actors make fools of themselves, spiral out of control, have delusions of grandeur, despair, and find it hard to imagine a future. They talk, they listen, they hope, they dream. They look for communion in a city, both beautiful and menacing, which can promise so much and yield so little. But they are hungry for life. They want to love and be loved.

These stories, all published in The New Yorker over the last fifteen years, make it clear that Antrim is one of America’s most important writers. His work has been praised by his significant contemporaries, including Jonathan Franzen, Thomas Pynchon, Jeffrey Eugenides, and George Saunders, who described The Verificationist as “one of the most pleasure-giving, funny, perverse, complicated, addictive novels of the last twenty years.” And here is Antrim’s best book yet: the story collection that reveals him as a master of the form.
An Italian Wife is the extraordinary story of Josephine Rimaldi her joys, sorrows, and passions, spanning more than seven decades. The novel begins in turn-of-the-century Italy, when fourteen-year-old Josephine, sheltered and naive, is forced into an arranged marriage to a man she doesn't know or love who is about to depart for America, where she later joins him. Bound by tradition, Josephine gives birth to seven children. The last, Valentina, is conceived in passion, born in secret, and given up for adoption.

Josephine spends the rest of her life searching for her lost child, keeping her secret even as her other children go off to war, get married, and make their own mistakes. Her son suffers in World War One. One daughter struggles to assimilate in the new world of the 1950s American suburbs, while another, stranded in England, grieves for a lover lost in World War Two. Her granddaughters experiment with the sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll in the 1970s. Poignant, sensual, and deeply felt, An Italian Wife is a sweeping and evocative portrait of a family bound by love and heartbreak.
A literary thriller that spins from Cleveland to Kiev and mistaken identities to mafia bosses, in this complicated web of family secrets and dealings.

In 1968 two boys are born to the same large family, both named for their grandfather Peter Hightower. One Peter grows up with his father in Africa, and ends up as a journalist in Granada, Spain. The other Peter, who goes by Petey, ends up as a wealthy drug-addled minor criminal, first in Cleveland and then in Kiev, Ukraine. 
In 1995, Petey runs afoul of his criminal associates in Kiev and disappears. The criminals track down the wrong cousin, and Peter in Granada finds himself on the run without any sense of why. He runs from one family member to the next, piecing together what his cousin was involved in as well as his family's long and complicated relationship with organized crime. Along the way we move backward in time, to the original Peter Henry Hightower's story, until it catches up with that of his children, revealing how Peter and Petey have been living in their grandfather's shadow all along, and how they might escape.

The novel takes a close look at capitalism and organized crime in the 20th century, and how increasingly, the former is starting to look a lot like the latter. It's about the legend of the self-made man, and what money can do to people, the problem of never knowing when you have enough.
From the bestselling author of Blue Bloods and Witches of East End comes a new novel that explores the battle between good and evil, in the city that never sleeps...Vampires of Manhattan : The New Blue Bloods Coven

You'll devour Melissa de la Cruz's hot new adult novel, in which her Blue Bloods immortals have matured and are now exposed to new challenges, new loves, new threats, and a haute, hot hipster lifestyle.

It is ten years after the great War with Lucifer, and the Coven has rebuilt. Leader of the Fallen, Oliver Hazard-Perry, plans to celebrate this prosperity by throwing a 400 Year Ball-and all Blue Blood society will be there.

And then, all hell breaks loose....
From the legendary literary master, winner of the National Book Award and New York Times bestselling author Joyce Carol Oates, a collection of ten spellbinding stories that maps the eerie darkness within us all

Insightful, disturbing, and mesmerizing in their lyrical precision, the stories in Lovely, Dark, Deep display Joyce Carol Oates's astonishing ability to make visceral the fear, hurt, and uncertainty that lurks at the edges of ordinary lives.

In "Mastiff," a woman and a man are joined in an erotic bond forged out of terror and gratitude. "Sex with Camel" explores how a sixteen-year-old boy realizes the depth of his love for his grandmother--and how vulnerable those feelings make him. Fearful that her husband is vanishing from their life, a woman becomes obsessed with keeping him in her sight in "The Disappearing." "A Book of Martyrs" reveals how the end of a pregnancy brings with it the end of a relationship. And in the title story, the elderly Robert Frost is visited by an interviewer, a troubling young woman who seems to know a good deal more about his life than she should.

A piercing and evocative collection, Lovely, Dark, Deep reveals Joyce Carol Oates at her most imaginative and unsettling.

No comments: