THE MASTER by COLM TOIBIN NOTE: Meeting Online

Daytime
Wednesday, October 18, 12:30 pm

The Daytime Book Group meets 3rd Wednesday of each month at 12:30 p.m. and reads mostly fiction new and old, and some nonfiction. The group meets online. For info to join meetings, please contact Jeanie Teare jwteare4@gmail.com

The Master: A Novel By Colm Toibin Cover Image

The Master: A Novel (Paperback)

$18.00


In Stock—Click for Locations
Politics and Prose at 5015 Connecticut Avenue NW
6 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:20pm

Spring/Summer '09 Reading Group List


“Henry James is one of the masters of American fiction, and in this wonderful new book Toibin works magic, conjuring images of the author in unforgettable prose, evoking not just the man, but his writing as well. The result is a brilliant, believable (fictional) portrait of a most remarkable man.”
— Kathy Ashton, The King's English, Salt Lake City, UT

“Colm Tóibín’s beautiful, subtle illumination of Henry James’s inner life” (The New York Times) captures the loneliness and hope of a master of psychological subtlety whose forays into intimacy inevitably fail those he tried to love.

Beautiful and profoundly moving, The Master tells the story of Henry James, a man born into one of America’s first intellectual families who leaves his country in the late nineteenth century to live in Paris, Rome, Venice, and London among privileged artists and writers. With stunningly resonant prose, “The Master is unquestionably the work of a first-rate novelist: artful, moving, and very beautiful” (The New York Times Book Review). The emotional intensity of this portrait is riveting.
Colm Tóibín is the author of ten novels, including The Magician, winner of the Rathbones Folio Prize; The Master, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; Brooklyn, winner of the Costa Book Award; The Testament of Mary; and Nora Webster, as well as two story collections and several books of criticism. He is the Irene and Sidney B. Silverman Professor of the Humanities at Columbia University and has been named as the Laureate for Irish Fiction for 2022–2024 by the Arts Council of Ireland. Three times shortlisted for the Booker Prize, Tóibín lives in Dublin and New York.
Product Details ISBN: 9780743250412
ISBN-10: 0743250419
Publisher: Scribner
Publication Date: May 3rd, 2005
Pages: 352
Language: English
Praise for The Master

"Exquisite storytelling." Philip Pullman, author of the His Dark Materials trilogy

“A spectacular novel.” Alice Sebold, author of The Lovely Bones

“A gorgeous portrait of a complex and passionate man.” Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran

“Tóibín takes us almost shockingly close to the mystery of art itself. A remarkably, utterly original book.” Michael Cunningham, author of The Hours

“A marvel.” John Updike, The New Yorker

“A deep, lovely, and enthralling book that engages with the disquiet and drama of a famous writing life.” Shirely Hazzard, author of The Great Fire

“Colm Tóibín does more than observe Henry James, he inhabits him. And from that ingenious perspective, he has produced an astonishing tour de force.” John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and The City of Falling Angels

“Superbly controlled ... this novel is a masterful, unshowy meditation on work, ambition, friendship, longing and mortality.” —Chicago Tribune

“Tóibín’s work displays the kind of depth and sensitivity that few authors can offer.... The result is a beautiful, haunting portrayal that measures the amplitude of silence and trajectory of a glance in the life of one of the world’s most astute social observers.” —The Christian Science Monitor

“Extraordinary . . .Tóibín paints a graceful, terribly sad portrait.” —Entertainment Weekly

“A deep, lovely, and enthralling book that engages with the disquiet and drama of a famous writing life: splendidly conceived and composed by a writer who is himself a master of his art.” —Shirley Hazzard, author of The Great Fire

“An indelibly beautiful novel.” —O, The Oprah Magazine

“The Master is a superbly researched nuanced portrait.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“In Tóibín’s skillful hands, what unfolds is a seamless and ultimately moving portrait of a fading era.” —The Boston Globe

“In Tóibín’s luminous fifth novel, he imagines the life of this intensely private American novelist. ... It’s a delicate, mysterious process, this act of creation, fraught with psychological tension, but Tóibín captures it beautifully.” —People

“This is an audacious, profound, and wonderfully intelligent book.” —The Guardian (U.K.)

“Colm Tóibín’s magnificent novel is a moving meditation on solitude as the wellspring of beauty.” —Bernhard Schlink, author of The Reader

“Colm Tóibín has a perfect understanding of the greatest of all American writers and accompanies him to Rome, Newport, Paris, Florence, the London of Oscar Wilde. Nothing about this book, however, feels piecemeal or improvised; it is a sustained performance worthy of the Master.” —Edmund White, author of A Boy’s Own Story and Fanny: A Fiction

“The Master proceeds with conversational naturalness, reading nothing like a biography. Tóibín uses a brilliant episodic architecture.... The cumulative effect is captivating.” —Minneapolis Star Tribune

“A formidably brilliant performance.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred)

“Colm Tóibín’s beautiful, subtle illumination of Henry James’s inner life . . . works so brilliantly.” —The New York Times

“Beautifully written, humane and spiced with welcome wit, The Master is a masterful work of fiction.” —The Courier Post

“A quiet tour de force: a work of deep seriousness and sympathy that gives us a genius in his full human dimensions. ... [This] profound novel is—dare one say it?—masterly.” —New York Observer

“Tóibín has written a work of great skill and ingenuity.” —The Weekly Standard

“A marvelous literary achievement.” —BookPage

“With this tribute to Henry James, Colm Tóibín allows us to become the master himself.” —St. Petersburg Times

“Even the reader who knows little about Henry James or his work can enjoy this marvelously intelligent and engaging novel, which presents not on a silver platter, but in tender, opened hands a beautifully nuanced psychological portrait.” —Booklist

“The Master is eminently approachable, an altogether wonderful experience.” —The Gay and Lesbian Review

“I can think of no other fictional portrait of a great writer—and the writer’s whole distinguished family—which is steadily compelling as an eloquent story and is also a genuine contribution to literary understanding.” —Reynolds Price, author of Noble Norfleet

“It is unlikely a better book about James will ever be written.” —Irish Voice

“[An] enthralling novel. . . . Tóibín displays—in a manner that is masterly—the wit and metaphorical flair, psychological subtlety and phrases of pouncing incisiveness with which a great novelist captured the nuances of consciousness and duplicities of society.” —Sunday Times (U.K.)

“To make a novel out of a writer’s life, and to have it turn out to be a genuine novel and not a disguised biography, is a strategic feat: Tóibín’s shy sly cadences and structural ingenuities are discreetly brilliant and always effective. His rendering of the first hints, or sensations, of the tales as they form in James’s thoughts is itself an instance of writer’s wizardry. This beautiful and perceptive novel will earn the rapt admiration of Jamesians and non-Jamesians alike.” —Cynthia Ozick

HARLEM SHUFFLE by Colson Whitehead NOTE: Meeting Online

Daytime
Wednesday, September 20, 12:30 pm

The Daytime Book Group meets 3rd Wednesday of each month at 12:30 p.m. and reads mostly fiction new and old, and some nonfiction. The group meets online. For info to join meetings please contact Jeanie Teare jwteare4@gmail.com

Harlem Shuffle: A Novel By Colson Whitehead Cover Image

Harlem Shuffle: A Novel (Paperback)

$17.00


In Stock—Click for Locations
Politics and Prose at 5015 Connecticut Avenue NW
9 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:20pm
Politics and Prose at 70 District Square SW
2 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:33pm
Politics and Prose at Union Market
3 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:33pm

September 2021 Indie Next List


“A love letter to 1960s Harlem that’s also a heist novel, a family saga, and so much more. Colson Whitehead proves once again that he’s always at the top of his game!”
— Alyssa Raymond, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, MA

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER From the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys, this gloriously entertaining novel is  “fast-paced, keen-eyed and very funny ... about race, power and the history of Harlem all disguised as a thrill-ride crime novel" (San Francisco Chronicle).

"Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked..." To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding salesman of reasonably priced furniture, making a decent life for himself and his family. He and his wife Elizabeth are expecting their second child, and if her parents on Striver's Row don't approve of him or their cramped apartment across from the subway tracks, it's still home. 

Few people know he descends from a line of uptown hoods and crooks, and that his façade of normalcy has more than a few cracks in it. Cracks that are getting bigger all the time. 

Cash is tight, especially with all those installment-plan sofas, so if his cousin Freddie occasionally drops off the odd ring or necklace, Ray doesn't ask where it comes from. He knows a discreet jeweler downtown who doesn't ask questions, either. 

Then Freddie falls in with a crew who plan to rob the Hotel Theresa—the "Waldorf of Harlem"—and volunteers Ray's services as the fence. The heist doesn't go as planned; they rarely do. Now Ray has a new clientele, one made up of shady cops, vicious local gangsters, two-bit pornographers, and other assorted Harlem lowlifes. 

Thus begins the internal tussle between Ray the striver and Ray the crook. As Ray navigates this double life, he begins to see who actually pulls the strings in Harlem. Can Ray avoid getting killed, save his cousin, and grab his share of the big score, all while maintaining his reputation as the go-to source for all your quality home furniture needs? 

Harlem Shuffle's ingenious story plays out in a beautifully recreated New York City of the early 1960s. It's a family saga masquerading as a crime novel, a hilarious morality play, a social novel about race and power, and ultimately a love letter to Harlem. 

But mostly, it's a joy to read, another dazzling novel from the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning Colson Whitehead.
COLSON WHITEHEAD is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of eleven works of fiction and nonfiction, and is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, for The Nickel Boys and The Underground Railroad, which also won the National Book Award. A recipient of MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships, he lives in New York City.
Product Details ISBN: 9780525567271
ISBN-10: 0525567275
Publisher: Anchor
Publication Date: August 9th, 2022
Pages: 336
Language: English
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE NOMINEE New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books of the Year • One of The Washington Posts 50 Notable Works of Fiction of the Year • TIME Magazine 100 Must Read Books of the Year • One of the Best Books of the Year: NPR, Slate, Boston Globe, Town & Country, Vulture, and more One of President Obama's Favorite Books of the Year • One of The New York Times Critics' Best Books of the Year

“A rich, wild book that could pass for genre fiction. It’s much more, but the entertainment value alone should ensure it the same kind of popular success that greeted his last two novels, The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys."
-Janet Maslin, The New York Times

One of the Ten Best Books of 2021
Laura Miller, Slate

“Colson Whitehead has a couple of Pulitzers under his belt, along with several other awards celebrating his outstanding novels. Harlem Shuffle is a suspenseful crime thriller that's sure to add to the tally — it's a fabulous novel you must read.”
-NPR.org

“A warm, involving novel” 
-The Wall Street Journal

“A a fiendishly clever romp, a heist novel that’s also a morality play about respectability politics, a family comedy disguised as a noir…Harlem Shuffle reads like a book whose author had enormous fun writing it. The dialogue crackles and sparks; the zippy heist plot twists itself in one showy misdirection after another. Most impressive of all is lovable family-man Ray, whose relentless ambition drives the plot forward while his glib salesman’s patter keeps you guessing about his true intentions. This book is a blast that will make you think, and what could be better than that?”
-Vox

“Another triumph from Pulitzer winner Whitehead” 
-People Magazine

“Fast-paced, keen-eyed and very funny, “Harlem Shuffle” is a novel about race, power and the history of Harlem all disguised as a thrill-ride crime novel.” 
-San Francisco Chronicle

“Enthralling, cinematic…Whitehead's evocation of early 1960s Harlem — strewn with double-crosses and double standards, broken glass and broken dreams — is irresistible…a valentine to a time and place.”
-Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“Dazzling…exciting and wise.”
-Walton Muyumba, The Boston Globe

“A spectacularly pleasurable read, and while it is, of course, literary, it’s also a pure, unapologetic crime-fiction page-turner.” 
-Los Angeles Times

Harlem Shuffle is a wildly entertaining romp. But as you might expect with this two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and MacArthur genius, Whitehead also delivers a devastating, historically grounded indictment of the separate and unequal lives of Blacks and whites in mid-20th century New York."
-Associated Press

“An American master”
-New York Times Book Review

“Two-time Pulitzer winner Whitehead (The Nickel Boys) returns with a sizzling heist novel set in civil rights–era Harlem. It’s 1959 and Ray Carney has built an ‘unlikely kingdom’ selling used furniture. A husband, a father, and the son of a man who once worked as muscle for a local crime boss, Carney is ‘only slightly bent when it [comes] to being crooked.’ But when his cousin Freddie—whose stolen goods Carney occasionally fences through his furniture store—decides to rob the historic Hotel Theresa, a lethal cast of underworld figures enter Carney’s life, among them the mobster Chink Montague, “known for his facility with a straight razor”; WWII veteran Pepper; and the murderous, purple-suited Miami Joe, Whitehead’s answer to No Country for Old Men’s Anton Chigurh. These and other characters force Carney to decide just how bent he wants to be. It’s a superlative story, but the most impressive achievement is Whitehead’s loving depiction of a Harlem 60 years gone—‘that rustling, keening thing of people and concrete’—which lands as detailed and vivid as Joyce’s Dublin. Don’t be surprised if this one wins Whitehead another major award.”
-Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Whitehead adds another genre to an ever-diversifying portfolio with his first crime novel, and it's a corker. Ray Carney owns a furniture store in Harlem. When the novel begins in 1959, he's selling mostly used furniture, struggling to escape the legacy of his criminal father. ‘Living taught you,’ Ray believes, ‘that you didn't have to live the way you'd been taught.’ Almost. Ray's ne'erdo-well cousin, Freddie, who's been luring Ray into hot water since childhood (‘I didn't mean to get you in trouble,’ is Freddie's constant refrain) regularly brings Ray the odd piece of jewelry, provenance unknown, which Ray peddles to a dealer downtown, building a stake to invest in his business. ‘There was a natural flow of goods in and out and through people's lives . . . a churn of property, and Ray facilitated that churn.’ It works until Freddie suggests Ray as a fence for a jewel heist at the Hotel Theresa (‘the Waldorf of Harlem’), and suddenly the churn produces a potentially disastrous backwash. Following Ray as his business grows and he delicately balances the crooked and straight sides of his life, Whitehead delivers a portrait of Harlem in the early ’60s, culminating with the Harlem Riot of 1964, that is brushed with lovingly etched detail and features a wonderful panoply of characters who spring to full-bodied life, blending joy, humor, and tragedy. A triumph on every level.”
-Booklist, Starred Review






COUD CUCKOO LAND by Anthony Doerr NOTE: Meeting Online

Daytime
Wednesday, August 16, 12:30 pm

The Daytime Book Group meets 3rd Wednesday of each month at 12:30 p.m. and reads mostly fiction new and old, and some nonfiction. The group meets online. For info to join meetings please contact Jeanie Teare jwteare4@gmail.com

Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel By Anthony Doerr Cover Image

Cloud Cuckoo Land: A Novel (Paperback)

$20.00


In Stock—Click for Locations
Politics and Prose at 5015 Connecticut Avenue NW
10 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:20pm
Politics and Prose at 70 District Square SW
5 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:33pm
Politics and Prose at Union Market
5 on hand, as of Feb 3 5:33pm

October 2021 Indie Next List


“I haven’t felt this hopeful after closing a book in a very long time. What does it mean to be alive? An ageless question, yet throughout time the answer is always human connection and the stories we tell to live, thrive, survive.”
— Julie Slavinsky, Warwick's, La Jolla, CA

On the New York Times bestseller list for over 20 weeks * A New York Times Notable Book * A National Book Award Finalist * Named a Best Book of the Year by Fresh Air, Time, Entertainment Weekly, Associated Press, and many more

“If you’re looking for a superb novel, look no further.” —The Washington Post

From the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of All the Light We Cannot See, comes the instant New York Times bestseller that is a “wildly inventive, a humane and uplifting book for adults that’s infused with the magic of childhood reading experiences” (The New York Times Book Review).


Among the most celebrated and beloved novels of recent times, Cloud Cuckoo Land is a triumph of imagination and compassion, a soaring story about children on the cusp of adulthood in worlds in peril, who find resilience, hope, and a book.

In the 15th century, an orphan named Anna lives inside the formidable walls of Constantinople. She learns to read, and in this ancient city, famous for its libraries, she finds what might be the last copy of a centuries-old book, the story of Aethon, who longs to be turned into a bird so that he can fly to a utopian paradise in the sky. Outside the walls is Omeir, a village boy, conscripted with his beloved oxen into the army that will lay siege to the city. His path and Anna’s will cross.

In the present day, in a library in Idaho, octogenarian Zeno rehearses children in a play adaptation of Aethon’s story, preserved against all odds through centuries. Tucked among the library shelves is a bomb, planted by a troubled, idealistic teenager, Seymour. This is another siege.

And in a not-so-distant future, on the interstellar ship Argos, Konstance is alone in a vault, copying on scraps of sacking the story of Aethon, told to her by her father.

Anna, Omeir, Seymour, Zeno, and Konstance are dreamers and outsiders whose lives are gloriously intertwined. Doerr’s dazzling imagination transports us to worlds so dramatic and immersive that we forget, for a time, our own.
Anthony Doerr is the author of the New York Times bestselling Cloud Cuckoo Land, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and All the Light We Cannot See, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Carnegie Medal, the Alex Award, and a #1 New York Times bestseller. He is also the author of the story collections Memory Wall and The Shell Collector, the novel About Grace, and the memoir Four Seasons in Rome. He has won five O. Henry Prizes, the Rome Prize, the New York Public Library’s Young Lions Award, the National Magazine Award for fiction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Story Prize. Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Doerr lives in Boise, Idaho, with his wife and two sons.
Product Details ISBN: 9781982168445
ISBN-10: 1982168447
Publisher: Scribner
Publication Date: September 27th, 2022
Pages: 608
Language: English
Praise for Anthony Doerr and Cloud Cuckoo Land

*WINNER OF THE READING THE WEST BOOK AWARD AND THE OHIOANA BOOK AWARD*

“Sweeping and atmospheric.”
Time 

“A magical (and hopeful) tale of humanity.” 
People 

“As intimate as a bedtime story, a love letter to libraries and bibliophiles.” 
O Magazine 

“A dazzling epic of love, war, and the joy of books.”
The Guardian 

“A novel of epic stature and ambition.”
Buzzfeed 

“[An] intricately braided story . . . [and] a stunning, mind-bending tale of survival and how closely we’re all connected.”
Good Housekeeping 

"Doerr works literary magic to tell three cleverly entwined stories set centuries apart, celebrating children, and the natural world, and always, especially, libraries. We'll be talking about this one for a long time."
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Packed with lush details and a gripping narrative.”
—Keziah Weir, Vanity Fair 

“A trip well worth taking with the inimitable Doerr.”
—Rob Merrill, Associated Press 

“Of all our contemporary fiction writers, Anthony Doerr is the one whose novels seem to be the purest response to the primal request: tell me a story. . . . [Cloud Cuckoo Land] transports us far above the stars, and down into the mud. It dazzles, and disturbs. And I for one wanted Doerr’s vast and overwhelming story to last much, much longer.”
—Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air  

“Sprawling and ambitious and imaginative. . . .  [Doerr] is a writer with the rare ability to achieve the universal and the specific simultaneously. His stories, both vast and intimate, are dazzling, sometimes dizzying in their scope. . . . [Cloud Cuckoo Land] is unlike anything you’ve ever read.”
—Samantha Schoech, San Francisco Chronicle  

“Readers will come away from it with a greater appreciation for those invisible qualities that have bound human life across the ages—the love of a good story and the joy of returning home.”
—Samantha Spengler, Wired

“There’s no book like Cloud Cuckoo Land… the story is mesmerizing, and the carefully-crafted tapestry of themes pulls characters and time periods together into an incandescent whole—tempting the reader to start over as soon as the book is finished.”
—Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Forbes

"Doerr's prose casts a spell; his world-building is both defiant and tender, a virtuosic meditation on the alchemy of books. Come for the magician's tricks, stay for the exquisite storytelling."
—Hamilton Cain, Star Tribune

“The greatest joy in [Cloud Cuckoo Land] comes from watching the pieces snap into place. It is an epic of the quietest kind, whispering across 600 years in a voice no louder than a librarian's.”
—Jason Sheehan, NPR.org  

“Doerr’s creation lifts off quickly, soars, and then, like the various wildfowl wheeling through the story, lands with practiced finesse. . . . Fueled by deep imagination and insistent compassion, Doerr weaves together his storylines with brisk pacing that never feels rushed.” 
—Erin Douglass, Christian Science Monitor 

“There is a kind of book a seasoned writer produces after a big success: large-hearted, wide in scope and joyous. Following his Pulitzer winner All the Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr’s Cloud Cuckoo Land is a deep lungful of fresh air–and a gift of a novel.”
—Elizabeth Knox, The Guardian 

“In a big fiction year . . . Cloud Cuckoo Land stands out. . . . Doerr’s characters are astoundingly resilient, suggesting that we may yet save ourselves, with literature an essential tool.”
—Hamilton Cain, Boston Globe 

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