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Renata Adler, "Speedboat" & "Pitch Dark"
Apr 4 2013 7:00 pm
burst on the scene in the late ’70s it was like nothing readers had encountered
before. It seemed to disregard the rules of the novel, but it wore its
unconventionality with ease. Reading it was a pleasure of a new, unexpected
kind. Above all, there was its voice, ambivalent, curious, wry, the voice of
Jen Fain, a journalist negotiating the fraught landscape of contemporary urban
America. Party guests, taxi drivers, brownstone dwellers, professors,
journalists, presidents, and debutantes fill these dispatches from the world as
Jen finds it.
A touchstone over the years for writers as different as David Foster Wallace and Elizabeth Hardwick, Speedboat returns to enthrall a new generation of readers.
“What’s new. What else. What next. What’s
Pitch Dark is a book of questions, a book of false starts, red herrings, misunderstandings, and lightning revelations. It is a book about love. Kate Ennis is poised at a critical moment in an affair with a married man. The complications and contradictions pursue her from a house in rural Connecticut to a brownstone apartment in New York City, to a small island off the coast of Washington, to a pitch black night in backcountry Ireland. And no matter where Kate goes or what she does, she confronts the mystery and inscrutability of others, and herself.
Composed in the style of Renata Adler’s celebrated novel Speedboat and displaying her keen journalist’s eye and mastery of language, both simple and sublime, Pitch Dark is a bold and astonishing work of art, filled with pathos, humor, and hard-won wisdom.
Renata Adler was born in Milan and raised in Connecticut. She received a B.A. from Bryn Mawr, an M.A. from Harvard, a D.d’E.S from the Sorbonne, a J.D. from Yale Law School, and an LL.D. (honorary) from Georgetown. Adler became a staff writer at The New Yorker in 1962 and, except for a year as the chief film critic of The New York Times, remained at The New Yorker for the next four decades. Her books include A Year in the Dark (1969); Toward a Radical Middle (1970); Reckless Disregard: Westmoreland v. CBS et al., Sharon v. Time (1986); Canaries in the Mineshaft (2001); Gone: The Last Days of The New Yorker (1999); Irreparable Harm: The U.S. Supreme Court and The Decision That Made George W. Bush President (2004); and the novels Speedboat (1976; winner of the Ernest Hemingway Award for Best First Novel) and Pitch Dark (1983).
This event is FREE.
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