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Far Hardcover – September 2, 2003

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Lancelotta is a razor's-edge writer with an existential streak and a fascination with the dichotomies of being. Celebrated for her short stories, she stays sharp in her debut novel in which a sultry and cryptic 30-year-old Baltimore woman struggles to understand what it is that she wants, why she doesn't want what most women seem to, and why her self-sufficiency so angers others. Writing with the surgical precision, dark sexuality, and psychological suspense of Annie Ernaux, Joan Didion, and Siri Hustvedt, Lancelotta spotlights transforming moments in Martha's spare life, from her teenage exploits with the local toughs to her Last Tango in Paris-like affair with Edward to her chilly relationships with her complicated mother and her beautiful younger sister (who ends up with Edward) to her abrupt move to a small town in Virginia to run a jewelry store. There Lancelotta adroitly conjures a nightmarish realm of injured souls capable of neurotic and vicious behavior as she traces the thin line between loneliness and aloneness, alienation and independence. Donna Seaman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

About the Author

Victoria Lancelotta's work has appeared in the Mississippi Review, Threepenny Review, and Glimmer Train, as well as the anthologies Fiction 2000 and Yellow Silk. She has been the Fiction Editor of the Mississippi Review and the Georgetown Review, and has been a fellow at the MacDowell Colony, the Djerassi Resident Artists' Program, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts. She lives with her husband in Nashville, Tennessee. This is her first novel.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Counterpoint (August 14, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582431140
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582431147
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,825,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is such a beautifully written book that I feel like a real dunce trying to review it, but here goes.
This book describes a womans life the way women really think, with sex described as snapshots of images, whiffs of smell and remembered small sounds. This way of describing sexual encounter really works well, it also works for describing other things from memory, especially for a character such as this: who drinks too much and may have ADHD. Well, OK, Martha is more complicated than a mere assigning of syndromes and learning disabilities can explain.
She is complicated and interesting; or, she is a shallow, promiscuous woman who comes to terms with her jealousy towards her sister (beautiful without make-up, who could stand this!).
The secondary characters are finely written and believable.
This book is entertaining and sexy, so if you have been reading Bridget Jones and the like, please know you will enjoy this as well. With any luck you will never go back to chick fiction after this read. The book is artfully written, so for God's sake buy this book and expose yourself to some proper literature with poetic descriptions of time, place and human interaction.
Ultimately I want to say "Far" is very smart, so readers don't have to be. LOL
I would love to be able to say I had written such a book.
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Format: Hardcover
"Far" is an exquisitely written novel about Martha, a 30-year-old Baltimore woman who refuses to conform to what most people think "normal" women should be like, and finds herself isolated form everyone as a result of it. Martha is perfectly content being completely self-sufficient. She has no desire to get married or have children, and instead becomes involved with Edward, a man who appears to accept Martha for who she is. However, when Martha begins to think that Edward may have other things in mind, she quickly relocates to a small southern town to manage a jewelry store. There, Martha has an affair with a married high-school guidance counselor and strikes up a rather odd friendship with her next-door-neighbor, Louise. When Martha discovers that her younger sister, Carly, has become involved with Edward, she eventually returns home in search of some sort of resolution.

The best thing about "Far" is author Victoria Lancelotta's beautiful prose. Her poetic language alone is a good enough reason to read this book, but the story itself is a haunting tale about love, loneliness, independence, and being a woman. This is a very unique and intriguing book that's unlike anything I've ever read before. It's a must-read for all women out there.
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