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Banishing Verona

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A couple begins an intense affair, only to be separated abruptly — and perhaps irrevocably — in this surprising, suspenseful love story.

Zeke is twenty-nine, a man who looks like a Raphael angel and who earns his living as a painter and carpenter in London. He reads the world a little differently from most people and has trouble with such ordinary activities as lying, deciphering expressions, recognizing faces. Verona is thirty-seven, confident, hot-tempered, a modestly successful radio show host, unmarried, and seven months pregnant. When the two meet in a house that Zeke is renovating, they fall in love, only to be separated less than twenty-four hours later when Verona leaves abruptly, without explanation, for Boston.

Both Zeke and Verona, it turns out, have complications in their lives, though not of a romantic kind. Verona's involve her brother, Henry, who is tied up in shady financial dealings. Zeke's father has had a heart attack and his mother is threatening to run away with her lover, all of which puts pressure on Zeke to take over the family grocery business. And yet he finds himself following Verona to Boston. As he pursues her, and she pursues Henry, both are forced to ask the perplexing question: Can we ever know another person?

Deftly plotted and filled with unexpected twists, Banishing Verona marks the arrival of another lyrical and wise novel from a writer whose work "radiates with compassion and intelligence and always, deliciously, mystery" (Alice Sebold).

Review:

"Livesey's lovely fifth novel tells the story of Zeke, a 29-year-old London housepainter with 'the face of a Raphael angel' and an autism-like difficulty relating to other people, and Verona, who shows up at a house Zeke is working on, very pregnant and claiming to be the owners' niece. After they spend a night together, Verona disappears, leaving a pair of painter's coveralls nailed to the floor. Neither can forget the other. As Zeke goes on a hunt for the mysterious Verona, she calls him — from Boston, where she has, in a slightly far-fetched turn of events, gone to hunt down her blithely amoral brother, Henry, to convince him to repay his creditors, who have begun threatening her. Zeke heeds her instructions to meet her there, only to spend days alone in a hotel room as she contacts him from New York and then from London, when, Henry's financial matters settled, she abruptly goes home. Devastated, he returns to London, ignores her calls (even burying his answering machine to fully banish her), but finally gives in to the powerful connection he felt the moment he met her. The off-kilter chronology of their alternating stories works well, and both Zeke and Verona have just enough quirks to be endearing without being implausible; the supporting characters are similarly well realized. As Livesey (Eva Moves the Furniture) gently probes the depths of longing, betrayal and forgiveness, her gift for creating sublimely unexpected sentences is abundantly on display: Zeke's 'emotions were swirling and scattering like leaves in a playground on a windy day; he glimpsed joy, rage, hope, amazement, jealousy, frustration and exaltation flashing by.' 'You're the opposite of Narcissus,' an old girlfriend of Zeke's tells him. Moments like these are ghosts that dance in the reader's vision long after the photographer's flashbulb has popped. Agent, Amanda Urban. Author tour. (Nov. 3)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Livesey constructs another of her reflective but surprisingly gripping tales....[N]otable for her penetrating knowledge of the human heart coupled with respect for its essential mysteries, both explored in elegant, evocative prose." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Told from the parallel viewpoints of her wistful hero and his winsome heroine, Livesey's unlikely yet enchanting romance poignantly reveals the mysterious machinations of the human heart." Booklist

Review:

"Margot Livesey gives us a witty 21st-century Odyssey by taking us to the outer limits of love and loyalty and back home again....You may...recognize bits of Zeke's malady in yourself and wish you had more of his special insight." Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Review:

"This gem of a novel manages to be funny, frightening, and upbeat all at the same time. Highly recommended." Library Journal

Review:

"Banishing Verona reminds me just why Margot Livesey is one of my favorite contemporary writers, those who keep the novel alive and vividly engaging. For her keen wit and wise heart, for her mingling of the tender with the diabolical — never mind her knack for holding the reader in thrall to a suspenseful story — she is a master, pure and simple." Julia Glass, author of Three Junes

Review:

"Margot Livesey's is such a personal, endearing, sharp voice, and this is a sly, special and funny book." Diane Johnson, author of L'Affaire

Review:

"In Banishing Verona, Livesey, a first-rate storyteller, examines the ties that bind families and lovers. Her take on life is original, her use of perspective is deft, and her prose lovely. Zeke is captivating." USA Today

Review:

"Tantalizing...Livesey has taken a familiar plot device and has turned it into such a delicious literary construct that it seems new." Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Review:

"Livesey is interested not in medical conditions but in the human condition....In fact, [she] expands (as is fiction's mission) our notion of what being human can mean." New York Times

Review:

"In Livesey's deft hands, their connection is as credible (and incredible) as love itself....[She] pulls it off effortlessly." The Boston Globe

Synopsis:

An obsessive-compulsive housepainter and a pregnant talk show host who goes back and forth between wanting to rescue her wayward brother and wanting to rescue herself, meet and spend the next few weeks chasing each other across continents to decide if it's the real thing.

Synopsis:

Deftly plotted and filled with unexpected twists, Banishing Verona marks the arrival of another lyrical and wise novel from a writer whose work "radiates with compassion and intelligence and always, deliciously, mystery" (Alice Sebold).

Synopsis:

Zeke is twenty-nine and working as a carpenter and painter in London. Verona is thirty-seven, headstrong, and seven months pregnant. When the two meet in a house that Zeke is renovating, they fall in love, only to be separated less than 24 hours later when Verona mysteriously disappears. After much searching, Zeke discovers that Verona has travelled to Boston to help Henry, her brother, disentangle himself from some shady financial matters. As impulsively as he fell for Verona, Zeke decides to follow her to Boston. It is here that both lovers take on further and more desperate searches of their own, and Livesey's sophisticated novel evolves into the most surprising and suspenseful of modern love stories.

About the Author

Margot Livesey is the award-winning author of a story collection, Learning by Heart, and of the novels Homework, Criminals, The Missing World, and Eva Moves the Furniture, which was a New York Times Notable Book, an Atlantic Monthly Best Book of the Year, and a PEN/Winship finalist. Born in Scotland, she currently lives in the Boston area, where she is writer in residence at Emerson College.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780312425203
Author:
Livesey, Margot
Publisher:
Picador USA
Subject:
General
Subject:
Pregnant women
Subject:
Problem families
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Love stories
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
London (england)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literary
Edition Description:
Picador
Publication Date:
20050931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
5-1/2 x 8-1/4

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Banishing Verona Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.95 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Picador USA - English 9780312425203 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Livesey's lovely fifth novel tells the story of Zeke, a 29-year-old London housepainter with 'the face of a Raphael angel' and an autism-like difficulty relating to other people, and Verona, who shows up at a house Zeke is working on, very pregnant and claiming to be the owners' niece. After they spend a night together, Verona disappears, leaving a pair of painter's coveralls nailed to the floor. Neither can forget the other. As Zeke goes on a hunt for the mysterious Verona, she calls him — from Boston, where she has, in a slightly far-fetched turn of events, gone to hunt down her blithely amoral brother, Henry, to convince him to repay his creditors, who have begun threatening her. Zeke heeds her instructions to meet her there, only to spend days alone in a hotel room as she contacts him from New York and then from London, when, Henry's financial matters settled, she abruptly goes home. Devastated, he returns to London, ignores her calls (even burying his answering machine to fully banish her), but finally gives in to the powerful connection he felt the moment he met her. The off-kilter chronology of their alternating stories works well, and both Zeke and Verona have just enough quirks to be endearing without being implausible; the supporting characters are similarly well realized. As Livesey (Eva Moves the Furniture) gently probes the depths of longing, betrayal and forgiveness, her gift for creating sublimely unexpected sentences is abundantly on display: Zeke's 'emotions were swirling and scattering like leaves in a playground on a windy day; he glimpsed joy, rage, hope, amazement, jealousy, frustration and exaltation flashing by.' 'You're the opposite of Narcissus,' an old girlfriend of Zeke's tells him. Moments like these are ghosts that dance in the reader's vision long after the photographer's flashbulb has popped. Agent, Amanda Urban. Author tour. (Nov. 3)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Livesey constructs another of her reflective but surprisingly gripping tales....[N]otable for her penetrating knowledge of the human heart coupled with respect for its essential mysteries, both explored in elegant, evocative prose."
"Review" by , "Told from the parallel viewpoints of her wistful hero and his winsome heroine, Livesey's unlikely yet enchanting romance poignantly reveals the mysterious machinations of the human heart."
"Review" by , "Margot Livesey gives us a witty 21st-century Odyssey by taking us to the outer limits of love and loyalty and back home again....You may...recognize bits of Zeke's malady in yourself and wish you had more of his special insight."
"Review" by , "This gem of a novel manages to be funny, frightening, and upbeat all at the same time. Highly recommended."
"Review" by , "Banishing Verona reminds me just why Margot Livesey is one of my favorite contemporary writers, those who keep the novel alive and vividly engaging. For her keen wit and wise heart, for her mingling of the tender with the diabolical — never mind her knack for holding the reader in thrall to a suspenseful story — she is a master, pure and simple."
"Review" by , "Margot Livesey's is such a personal, endearing, sharp voice, and this is a sly, special and funny book."
"Review" by , "In Banishing Verona, Livesey, a first-rate storyteller, examines the ties that bind families and lovers. Her take on life is original, her use of perspective is deft, and her prose lovely. Zeke is captivating."
"Review" by , "Tantalizing...Livesey has taken a familiar plot device and has turned it into such a delicious literary construct that it seems new."
"Review" by , "Livesey is interested not in medical conditions but in the human condition....In fact, [she] expands (as is fiction's mission) our notion of what being human can mean."
"Review" by , "In Livesey's deft hands, their connection is as credible (and incredible) as love itself....[She] pulls it off effortlessly."
"Synopsis" by , An obsessive-compulsive housepainter and a pregnant talk show host who goes back and forth between wanting to rescue her wayward brother and wanting to rescue herself, meet and spend the next few weeks chasing each other across continents to decide if it's the real thing.
"Synopsis" by , Deftly plotted and filled with unexpected twists, Banishing Verona marks the arrival of another lyrical and wise novel from a writer whose work "radiates with compassion and intelligence and always, deliciously, mystery" (Alice Sebold).
"Synopsis" by ,
Zeke is twenty-nine and working as a carpenter and painter in London. Verona is thirty-seven, headstrong, and seven months pregnant. When the two meet in a house that Zeke is renovating, they fall in love, only to be separated less than 24 hours later when Verona mysteriously disappears. After much searching, Zeke discovers that Verona has travelled to Boston to help Henry, her brother, disentangle himself from some shady financial matters. As impulsively as he fell for Verona, Zeke decides to follow her to Boston. It is here that both lovers take on further and more desperate searches of their own, and Livesey's sophisticated novel evolves into the most surprising and suspenseful of modern love stories.

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