American Genius

American Genius

A Comedy

Book - 2006
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Baker & Taylor
The National Book Critics Circle Award-finalist author of No Lease on Life presents a Jane Austen-style parable for the twenty-first century in which the members of a scholarly colony struggle with competing values. Original.

Perseus Publishing
Lynne Tillman’s previous novels have won her both popular approval and critical praise from such literary heavyweights as Edmund White and Colm Tóibín. With American Genius, her first novel since 1998's No Lease on Life, she shows what might happen if Jane Austen were writing in 21st-century America. Employing her trademark crystalline prose and intricate, hypnotic sentences, Tillman fashions a microcosm of American democracy: a scholarly colony functioning like Melville’s Pequod. In this otherworld, competing values ? rationality and irrationality, generosity and selfishness, love and lust, shame and honor ? collide through a witty narrative, cycling through such disparate tropes as skin disease, chair design, and Manifest Destiny. All this is folded into the narrator’s memories and emotional life, culminating in a séance that may offer escape and transcendence ? or perhaps nothing. Grand and minute, elegiac and hilarious, Lynne Tillman expands the possibilities of the American novel in this dazzling read.

Lynne Tillman’s previous novels have won her both popular approval and critical praise from such literary heavyweights as Edmund White and Colm Tóibín. With American Genius, her first novel since 1998's No Lease on Life, she shows what might happen if Jane Austen were writing in 21st-century America. Employing her trademark crystalline prose and intricate, hypnotic sentences, Tillman fashions a microcosm of American democracy: a scholarly colony functioning like Melville’s Pequod. In this otherworld, competing values — rationality and irrationality, generosity and selfishness, love and lust, shame and honor — collide through a witty narrative, cycling through such disparate tropes as skin disease, chair design, and Manifest Destiny. All this is folded into the narrator’s memories and emotional life, culminating in a séance that may offer escape and transcendence — or perhaps nothing. Grand and minute, elegiac and hilarious, Lynne Tillman expands the possibilities of the American novel in this dazzling read.


Publisher: Brooklyn, NY : Soft Skull Press ; [Berkeley, Calif.] : Distributed by Publishers Group West, 2006
ISBN: 9781933368443
1933368446
Characteristics: 292 p. ; 22 cm

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