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13 Ways of Looking at the Novel
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Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling novelist Jane Smiley celebrates the novel and takes us on an exhilarating tour through one hundred of them in this seductive and immensely rewarding literary tribute. In her inimitable style exuberant, candid, opinionated Smiley explores the power of the novel, looking at its history and variety, its cultural impact, and just how it works its magic. She invites us behind the scenes of novel-writing, sharing her own habits and spilling the secrets of her craft. And she offers priceless advice to aspiring authors. As she works her way through one hundred novels from classics such as the thousand-year-old Tale of Genji to recent fiction by Zadie Smith and Alice Munro she infects us anew with the passion for reading that is the governing spirit of this gift to book lovers everywhere."
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About the Author

Jane Smileyis the author of numerous novels, includingA Thousand Acres, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, and most recently, Golden Age, the concluding volume of The Last Hundred Years trilogy. She is also the author of five works of nonfiction and a series of books for young adults. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, she has also received the PEN Center USA Lifetime Achievement Award for Literature. She lives in Northern California. "

Reviews

Because she found she couldn't write after 9/11, Smiley decided that instead she would read. Here she reflects on the 100 novels she devoured. With a six-city tour and a 50,000-copy first printing. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Plagued by a sense of despair while writing her last novel, Good Faith, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Smiley (A Thousand Acres, etc.) decided to return to the enterprise that got her started as a writer: reading. The result is a book that sets out to investigate the novel itself. Smiley does not offer a radically new way of seeing the novel. Instead, her study is methodical and cumulative, producing a wonderful text, opinionated but not argumentative, instructive but not heavily theoretical text. The book is roughly divided into three sections: the first classifies the novel, beginning with the most simple of definitions (e.g., it's long, in prose, has a protagonist), and adds moral and aesthetic complexity as it moves along. The second section consists of a primer for fledgling novelists. Here Smiley's years as a writing instructor show; her attitude toward all potential novelists is open-minded and generous, acknowledging the difficulty of the project while providing encouragement to continue. Finally, the book turns to the hundred novels she chose to read, from The Tale of Genji and Don Quixote to White Teeth and Atonement, devoting a few pages to a consideration of each. The result is a thorough reflection on the art and craft of the novel from one of its best-known contemporary practitioners.50,000 first printing. (Sept. 15) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Engaging. . . . Down-to-earth. . . . Smiley s unmediated voice blunt, uncompromising and witty rings from every page. . . . She inspires wicked delight. Los Angeles Times Book Review A massive victory. . . . Awfully smart. . . . Always a pleasure. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Provocative. . . . Wise and humane. . . . It reminds readers of the novel why they love their avocation. . . . I most heartily recommend it. Marjorie Kehe, The Christian Science Monitor Thorough, insightful. . . . Sure to inspire delicious debate and excite interest in undiscovered works. . . . Her critiques are shrewd, artful and unflinching. . . . Thirteen Ways continues to whisper its profundities long after the last page is turned. Rocky Mountain News" Engaging. . . . Down-to-earth. . . . Smiley s unmediated voice blunt, uncompromising and witty rings from every page. . . . She inspires wicked delight. Los Angeles Times Book Review A massive victory. . . . Awfully smart. . . . Always a pleasure. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Provocative. . . . Wise and humane. . . . It reminds readers of the novel why they love their avocation. . . . I most heartily recommend it. Marjorie Kehe, The Christian Science Monitor Thorough, insightful. . . . Sure to inspire delicious debate and excite interest in undiscovered works. . . . Her critiques are shrewd, artful and unflinching. . . . Thirteen Ways continues to whisper its profundities long after the last page is turned. Rocky Mountain News" "Engaging. . . . Down-to-earth. . . . Smiley's unmediated voice-blunt, uncompromising and witty-rings from every page. . . . She inspires wicked delight." -"Los Angeles Times Book Review""A massive victory. . . . Awfully smart. . . . Always a pleasure." -"The Atlanta Journal-Constitution""Provocative. . . . Wise and humane. . . . It reminds readers of the novel why they love their avocation. . . . I most heartily recommend it." -Marjorie Kehe, "The Christian Science Monitor""Thorough, insightful. . . . Sure to inspire delicious debate and excite interest in undiscovered works. . . . Her critiques are shrewd, artful and unflinching. . . . "Thirteen Ways" continues to whisper its profundities long after the last page is turned." -"Rocky Mountain News" " Engaging. . . . Down-to-earth. . . . Smiley' s unmediated voice- blunt, uncompromising and witty- rings from every page. . . . She inspires wicked delight." - "Los Angeles Times Book Review" " A massive victory. . . . Awfully smart. . . . Always a pleasure." - "The Atlanta Journal-Constitution" " Provocative. . . . Wise and humane. . . . It reminds readers of the novel why they love their avocation. . . . I most heartily recommend it." - Marjorie Kehe, "The Christian Science Monitor" " Thorough, insightful. . . . Sure to inspire delicious debate and excite interest in undiscovered works. . . . Her critiques are shrewd, artful and unflinching. . . . "Thirteen Ways" continues to whisper its profundities long after the last page is turned." - "Rocky Mountain News"

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