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J R
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A National Book Award-winning satire about the unchecked power of American capitalism, written more than three decades before the 2008 financial crisis.

About the Author

A 1982 MacArthur Fellow and two-time winner of the National Book Award, William Gaddis (1922-1998) was the author of five novels- The Recognitions, J R, Carpenter's Gothic, A Frolic of His Own, and posthumously, Agape Agape. His complex, innovative, and intellectually rigorous body of work has long served as a source of inspiration, admiration, and debate for readers and fellow writers alike. Joy Williams is the author of several novels and short-story collections, as well as the book of essays Ill Nature. She lives in Tucson, Arizona, and Laramie, Wyoming.

Reviews

"No other novel I know of catches up so much of contemporary reality, or renders it so exactly, and with such telling detail." --George Stade, The New York Times Book Review

"J R
is a wild, rollicking success. It deserves the buzz and marketing budget typically reserved for writers who receive seven-figure advances. It deserves an army of dedicated readers who will, with near-religious devotion, take the time to unlock the wonders and mysteries of this hilarious, brilliant, and punishing satire of American capitalism. More than almost anything being published by young or established writers today, J R is the novel of our age." --Lee Konstantinou, Los Angeles Review of Books

"I read J R, and it seemed to me, at first, that Gaddis was working against his own gifts for narration and physical description, leaving the great world behind to enter the pigeon-coop clutter of minds intent on deal-making and soul-swindling. This was not self-denial, I began to understand, but a writer of uncommon courage and insight discovering a method that would allow him to realize his sense of what the great world had become. J R in fact is a realistic novel--so unforgivingly real that we may fail to recognize it as such." --Don DeLillo "William Gaddis is pure prodigy. His novels are massive in ambition and dazzling in execution. They are fierce with integrity." --Mary McCarthy Gaddis's work encourages us both to watch the show and to consider the man behind the curtain, the life that both exceeds and requires the novel. J R is not really "about" an eleven-year-old who dupes everyone; it is about the outrage of a larger consciousness at the dehumanization of corporate life. --Greg Gerke, Kenyon Review

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