Desperate Characters

Paula Fox (Author) Jonathan Franzen (Introduction by)
Available

Description

Otto and Sophie Bentwood live in a changing neighborhood in Brooklyn. Their stainless-steel kitchen is newly installed, and their Mercedes is parked curbside. After Sophie is bitten on the hand while trying to feed a stray, perhaps rabies-infected cat, a series of small and ominous disasters begin to plague the Bentwoods' lives, revealing the fault lines and fractures in a marriage--and a society--wrenching itself apart.

First published in 1970 to wide acclaim, Desperate Characters stands as one of the most dazzling and rigorous examples of the storyteller's craft in postwar American literature -- a novel that, according to Irving Howe, ranks with "Billy Budd, The Great Gatsby, Miss Lonelyhearts, and Seize the Day."

Product Details

Price
$14.95  $13.75
Publisher
W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
March 30, 2015
Pages
192
Dimensions
5.4 X 0.6 X 8.1 inches | 0.4 pounds
Language
English
Type
Paperback
EAN/UPC
9780393351101
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Paula Fox (1923--2017) was the author of Desperate Characters, The Widow's Children, A Servant's Tale, The God of Nightmares, Poor George, The Western Coast, and Borrowed Finery: A Memoir, among other books.
Jonathan Franzen is a National Book Award and James Tait Black Memorial Prize winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist, and was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.

Reviews

Absorbing, elegant.--Charles Winecoff
Packed with lucid insights.--Isabella Biedenharn
This perfect novel about pain is as clear, and as wholly believable, and as healing, as a fever dream.--Frederick Busch
Fox dissects a marriage and a social class with the sharpest of knives, cannily undermining not only one couple's false pieties and deceptive comforts but our own as well.--Marisa Silver
A masterwork of economical prose...Remarkable...[O]ne can only wonder who is more fatally deluded--the desperate characters of the Bentwoods' era or the hyperconfident ones of our own.--Andrew O'Hehir