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Vacation Hardcover – September 3, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
In this enthralling headscratcher of a first novel, Unferth (the story collection Minor Robberies) weaves an intricate tale of quests and escapes, of leaving and following. As a child, Myers falls out of a window, shattering his skull and unknowingly living the rest of his life with a misshapen head. Years later, he follows his wife, who spends her evenings following a man she doesn't know. The man, whom Myers identifies as a former classmate of his named Gray, is unaware that he is being doubly tracked. The marriages of both men fall apart, and Myers finds himself on vacation, traveling in search of Gray while Gray's ex-wife and daughter look for him, too. The problem is that Gray does not know where Gray is. If this all sounds puzzling, it is; still, with grace and skill, Unferth manages to weave together the most far-fetched of events. A subplot involving a dolphin untrainer and a woman in search of her birth father is distracting, and Unferth's wordplay can verge on the excessive, but a poignancy emerges in spite of Unferth's post-modern indulgences. (Sept.)
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"Wonderful, addictive prose. Ms. Unferth sure knows how to turn a phrase and it's a delight to follow her across the American landscape."
"Part mystery, part sonata, Unferth writes like a musician plays, weaving images and themes and melodies with these beautifully rhythmic, funny, heart-breaking sentences. The whole novel should be >read aloud and relished."
"Deb Olin Unferth is, I believe, one of the crucial literary artists of her generation. Her fictions give evidence of an artist determined to speak about the remarkable, who manages with exactitude all elements necessary to produce the well-made, eccentric object. Her vision evokes high comedy and the violence of tragedy heard through voices exquisitely particular to her mind."
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Top customer reviews
I have not read any of her short stories or memoir, but I might just have to seek them out.