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Summerlong

By Dean Bakopoulos

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Format: Paperback, 352 pages
Other Information: None
Published In: United Kingdom, 31 May 2016
In the sweltering heat of one summer in Grinnell, Iowa, Claire and Don Lowry discover that married life can fall apart seemingly overnight. Don, the town's most successful real-estate agent, is hiding the fact that their home is in foreclosure from his wife, Claire. She has secrets of her own: she's bored, lonely and lusts after Charlie Gulliver, a failed actor who has returned home to sort out his father's affairs. As the summer lingers and the temperature rises, the town's adults grow wilder and more reckless while their children grow increasingly confused. Claire, Don, and their neighbours and friends find themselves on an existential odyssey, exploring the most puzzling quandaries of marriage and maturity. When does a fantasy become infidelity? When does happy routine become boring monotony? Can Claire and Don survive everything that befalls them in this one summer, forgive their mistakes, and begin again? Summerlong is a deft and hilarious exploration of the simmering tensions beneath the surface of a contented marriage that explode in the bedrooms and backyards of a small town over the course of a long, hot summer.

About the Author

Dean Bakopoulos is the author of the New York Times Notable Book Please Don't Come Back From the Moon (Transworld, 2006) and My American Unhappiness (HMH, 2011). He is the writer-in-residence of English at Grinnell College, and lives in Iowa.

Reviews

Summerlong is both smart and satisfying * Metro U.S. * Bakopoulos is very much his own writer, and it is his distinct humanity and sense of humor that make this story so emotionally rewarding. This is that rare, contemporary suburban novel with characters the reader can actually embrace in spite of their many flaws * Publishers Weekly * Provocative, sultry...the novel stays light on its feet; its breezy chapters are laced with sex and humor...between the louche vibe and matriarchal presence, the novel often feels like Armistead Maupin's San Francisco teleported to the Midwest * Kirkus * Tennessee Williams has nothing on Bakopoulos when it comes to marital and moral dissipation... Into this emotional abyss Bakopoulos injects a high degree of coy humor and wry self-deprecation to deliver a heartbreaking and wise ... A sure hit with fans of the three Jonathans: Dee, Franzen, and Tropper * Booklist, starred review * Dean Bakopoulos has written the funniest, saddest, sultriest, most profound account of love gone wrong and right you'll encounter this year. Summerlong is the novel everyone will be reading all summer long, the beach read you've been waiting for-one that sweeps you away with its story while impressing you with its insightful intelligence and stylistic elegance * Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon * Beyond the muggy weather, Bakopoulos, writer-in-residence at Grinnell College, conjures the milky mood of A Midsummer Night's Dream, with pot and booze substituting for fairy dust and lovers entwined with the wrong person... Lord, what fools these mortals be! And what fun to see them in action * Seattle Times * All the threads Bakopoulos has been expertly weaving suddenly begin to connect, and suddenly everything fits in a way that is as dazzling as the firefires that dot the shore, bringing a sense of absolute wonder and even a kind of hope * San Francisco Chronicle * There is no better guide through a hot summer in the heartland than Dean Bakopoulos...Lovers chasing all over the joint, the glorious wreckage, and Bakopoulos with his keen eye, his sympathy and his wit, there to see all * Jane Hamilton * Summer gets weird in a Midwestern town when married couples start behaving recklessly - as if, my God, they're not married at all! Bakopoulos...uses the adults' bizarre behavior to examine ideas about marriage, happiness and that oh-so-slim line between fantasy and infidelity * Miami Herald * Summerlong is Dean Bakopoulos at his finest: daringly funny, heartbreakingly sad, and forever on the watch for redemption. This is a book for any season, any reader, anywhere - it shimmers with magic, lust, and love * Nickolas Butler, author of Shotgun Lovesongs * Dean Bakopoulos is a great talent - everything he writes is full of insight and inspiration and the best kind of divine comedy * Lorrie Moore * [A] sexy but surprisingly poignant new novel...Bakopoulos's greatest talent is his ability to mix ribald comedy with heartfelt sorrow * Ron Charles, Washington Post * A couple in a crumbling marriage find themselves entwined with two lost 20-somethings during a hot, sticky Iowan summer... Dean Bakopoulos, who lives in Iowa himself, crafts a surprisingly steamy Midwestern landscape and a set of characters who will do anything to stay afloat as their lives fall apart * Esquire * A witty read about likeable people behaving badly * People magazine * For a novel steeped in marital atrophy and midlife ennui, Summerlong offers plenty of humor in unexpected moments * New York Times * Summerlong is the Great White Midlife Crisis novel that Jonathan Franzen has tried to write (and failed) and Jonathan Lethem has tried to write (and failed) and Michael Chabon (wisely) half-avoided ever trying to write. But Dean Bakopoulos pulls it off * NPR.org *

EAN: 9780349134383
ISBN: 0349134383
Publisher: Blackfriars
Dimensions: 19.8 x 14.7 x 2.4 centimetres (0.22 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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