By Nick Hornby
Narrated in turns through a dowdy, middle-aged lady, a half-crazed adolescent, a disgraced breakfast television presenter and an American rock famous person cum pizza supply boy, some distance Down is the tale of the Toppers residence 4, aka Maureen, Jess, Martin and JJ. A low-rent crowd with totally not anything in universal - store the place they prove that New Year's Eve evening. And what they do subsequent, of course.
Funny, unhappy, and beautifully humane, Nick Hornby's new novel asks a number of the large questions: approximately lifestyles and demise, strangers and friendship, love and ache, and even if a slice of pizza can rather see you thru a protracted, darkish evening of the soul.
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2008 nationwide ebook AWARD WINNER
Peter Matthiessen’s nice American epic–Killing Mister Watson, misplaced Man’s River, and Bone by way of Bone–was conceived as one large mysterious novel, yet due to its size it used to be initially damaged up into 3 books. during this daring new rendering, Matthiessen has minimize approximately a 3rd of the final textual content and collapsed the time-frame whereas deepening the insights and motivations of his characters with significant rewriting all through. In Shadow kingdom, he has marvelously distilled a enormous paintings, figuring out his unique imaginative and prescient.
Inspired by means of a near-mythic occasion of the wild Florida frontier on the flip of the 20th century, Shadow nation reimagines the legend of the encouraged Everglades sugar planter and infamous outlaw E. J. Watson, who drives himself relentlessly towards his personal violent finish by the hands of associates who normally fashionable him, in a killing that obsessed his favourite son.
Shadow kingdom traverses unusual landscapes and frontier hinterlands inhabited by means of american citizens of each provenance and colour, together with the black and Indian inheritors of the archaic racism that, as Watson’s spouse saw, "still casts its shadow over the kingdom. "
Peter Matthiessen’s lyrical and illuminating paintings within the Watson narrative has been praised hugely through such contemporaries as Saul Bellow, William Styron, and W. S. Merwin. Joseph Heller acknowledged "I learn it in nice gulps, up each one evening later than i wished to be, in my hungry impatience to determine an increasing number of. "
<u>Praise for Shadow Country</u>
“Shadow kingdom is altogether gripping, surprising, and brilliantly informed, not only a travel de strength in its stylistic diversity, yet an exceptional American novel, as robust a analyzing event as approximately any in our literature. This brilliant, unhappy masterpiece approximately race, heritage, and defeated goals can simply stand comparability with Ralph Ellison's Invisible guy and Robert Penn Warren's all of the King's males. Little ask yourself, too, that elements of the tale of E. J. Watson name up comparisons with Dostoevsky, Conrad, and, necessarily, Faulkner. In each manner, Shadow kingdom is a bravura functionality, immediately historical past, fiction, and myth–as good because the capstone to the occupation of 1 of the main favorite and admirable writers of our time. ” — the hot York overview of Books
“Magnificent and capacious…. I'll simply say the following that the booklet took my sleeve and prefer the traditional mariner wouldn't enable move. Matthiessen has made his three-part saga right into a new thing…. ultimately we have those books welded like a bell, and with Watson's track the final sound, the entire components fuse and resonate…. a panoramic saga. ” — the l. a. Times
“Gorgeously written and unfailingly compelling, Shadow kingdom is the exhilarating masterwork of [Matthiessen’s] profession, every piece as bold as Moby Dick. ” — nationwide Geographic experience magazine
“Peter Mattiessen consolidates his epic masterpiece of Florida -- and crafts anything even better…[He] merits credits for many years of meticulous examine and obsessive info and hovering prose that switched over the Watson legend into significantly acclaimed literature…. somebody in need of an evidence for what occurred to Florida can now locate it in one novel, a good American novel. ” — Miami Herald
“Matthiessen is writing approximately one man's existence in Shadow kingdom, yet he's additionally writing concerning the lifetime of the state over the process part a century. Watson's tale is largely the tale of the yank frontier, of the conquering of untamed lands and folks, and of what such empires cost…. Even between a physique of labor as superb as Matthiessen's, this can be his nice ebook. ” — St. Petersburg Times
“Shadow kingdom is a magnum opus. Matthiessen is meticulous in growing characters, lyrical in describing landscapes, and resolute in dissecting the values and prices that followed the advance of this kingdom. ” --Seattle Times
“Shadow Country” is an formidable, lasting, and significant paintings of literature that won't quickly fade away. it's a testomony to Mr. Matthiessen’s integrity as an artist that he felt forced to come back to the Watson fabric to provide this paintings and fulfill his unique vision…. a multifaceted paintings that may be learn variously or concurrently as a mental novel, a ancient novel, a morality story, a political allegory, or a secret. -- East Hampton Star
“Matthiessen’s Watson trilogy is a touchstone of recent American literature…this reworking…is remarkable…. the place Watson used to be a powerful personality earlier than, he comes throughout as not anything in need of iconic right here; it’s tough to discover one other determine in American literature so completely and confincingly portrayed. ” — Publishers Weekly, starred assessment, choose of the Week
“Matthiessen has reinvigorated and rejoined the trilogy’s novels…a mosaic in regards to the existence and lynch-mob demise of a turn-of-the century Florida Everglades sugar planter and serial killer named E. J. Watson — into the 900-plus-page Shadow nation. this can be no mere repackaging: 400 pages have been lower from the novels, prior heritage characters now tromp to the foreground, and the books’ rangy, Faulknerian essence is rendered extra digestible. Deliciously digestible, that's; this can be a thick porterhouse of a singular. ” — Men’s magazine
"The fiction of Peter Matthiessen is the explanation lots of people in my new release made up our minds to be writers. without doubt approximately it. SHADOW nation lives as much as anyone's maximum expectancies for nice writing. " -- Richard Ford
"Peter Matthiessen is a brilliantly proficient and impressive author, an encouraged anatomist of the yank mythos. His storytelling talents are prodigious and his rapport together with his topic is amazing. " -- Joyce Carol Oates
"Peter Matthiessen's paintings, either in fiction and non-fiction, has turn into a special success in his personal iteration and in American literature as a complete. every little thing that he has written has been conveyed in his personal transparent, deeply educated, stylish and strong prose. The Watson saga-in-the-round, to which he has dedicated approximately thirty years, is his crowning success. SHADOW kingdom, his distillation of the sooner trilogy, is his transmutation of it to symbolize his unique imaginative and prescient. it's the quintessence of his lifelong matters, and a superb legacy. " -- W. S. Merwin
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For Cal, a Belfast teen who, opposed to his will, is considering the poor warfare among Catholics and Protestants, many of the offerings are devastatingly uncomplicated: he can paintings within the slaughterhouse that nauseates him or sign up for the dole queue; he can brood on his prior or plan a destiny with the attractive, widowed Marcella for whose grief he stocks greater than a bit accountability.
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Additional resources for A Long Way Down
He took the long way back, down a winding path that lead to the near-empty parking lot. Lake View Cemetery was a beautiful place, despite the somber graves that stood as cold reminders of so much loss and 44 • JAMIE FORD longing. The ﬁnal resting place of Chief Seattle’s daughter and other notables like Asa Mercer and Henry Yesler, it was a walking tour of Seattle’s forgotten history. Not unlike the Nisei War Memorial Monument in the northeast corner. It was a smaller monument, smaller than the headstones of members of the Nordstrom family, dedicated to Japanese American veterans—locals who’d died ﬁghting the Germans.
He’ll deal with it in his own way, and in his own time,” Ethel had said, shortly after she learned she had cancer. ” Ethel had taken Henry out on Green Lake, on a boat, beneath a sunny 40 • JAMIE FORD August sky, to tell him the bad news. “Oh, I’m not leaving anytime soon,” she’d said. ” She had never stopped mothering her son, and Henry for that matter. Until the treatments began, then everything got turned around. And seemed to stay that way. Now father and son waited in silence, ignoring the carts of dim sum that rolled by.
But that was okay. I’ll do what I have to, Henry thought. But along the way, I think I’m tired of being careful. Finishing his breakfast, he thanked his mother and gathered his books for school. Each had a newly wrapped cover—made from folded jazzclub ﬂyers. After school that Wednesday, Henry and Keiko did their work duties. Emptied the trash in the classrooms. Pounded erasers. Then they waited for the danger to subside. Chaz and Denny Brown were responsible for retiring the ﬂag each day, which kept them around a little longer than usual.