Master your Minecraft
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Tour our stores


    Recently Viewed clear list


    What I'm Giving | December 5, 2014

    William Gibson: IMG William Gibson: What I'm Giving



    At Powell's, we feel the holidays are the perfect time to share our love of books with those close to us. For this special blog series, we reached... Continue »

    spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$10.50
List price: $15.95
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

More copies of this ISBN

Notable American Women

by

Notable American Women Cover

 

Review-A-Day

"The central plot of the book concerns the actions of a woman named Jane Dark, whose cult-like female following seeks to attain perfect stillness and silence. She confines Ben's father to a hole guarded by Larry the Punisher and orders Ben to be a mating 'sire' for the Silentists and 'various women's militia that came through town.' Marcus includes historical timelines and definitions of terms throughout to help make this somewhat difficult book easier to follow, and the straight-faced weaving of his tale makes it all the more funny. For all the work a reader must put into grasping Marcus's weird world, the payoff is one that the reader will keep for a long time." Kevin Sampsell, Powells.com (read the entire Powells.com review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Ben Marcus achieved cult status and gained the admiration of his peers with his first book, The Age of Wire and String. With Notable American Women he goes well beyond that first achievement to create something radically wonderful, a novel set in a world so fully imagined that it creates its own reality.

On a farm in Ohio, American women led by Jane Dark practice all means of behavior modification in an attempt to attain complete stillness and silence. Witnessing (and subjected to) their cultish actions is one Ben Marcus, whose father, Michael Marcus, may be buried in the back yard, and whose mother, Jane Marcus, enthusiastically condones the use of her son for (generally unsuccessful) breeding purposes, among other things. Inventing his own uses for language, the author Ben Marcus has written a harrowing, hilarious, strangely moving, altogether engrossing work of fiction that will be read and argued over for years to come.

Review:

"Marcus negotiates an esoteric though uniquely American literary terrain....Marcus reinvents the family drama....The book evokes an alternate reality revealing the dark side of our common history, an...America that exists [only] in Marcus's lyrical, abstract prose. This will be a difficult read for many, but it will surely stand the test of time as a genuinely important book." Library Journal

Review:

"Conceptual daring, deadpan humor, and dizzying forays into allegory mark Marcus's first novel....Marcus has crafted a dystopian novel in the tradition of Brave New World and 1984....Ambitious and polished, if sometimes willfully opaque, this is an intriguing debut." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Marcus follows up his extraordinary The Age of Wire and String with something of a disappointment. The verbal wizardry is still there, but the content has grown coquettish and slightened....The author's wit can still capture perfect tens....But ennui can set in...amid these fountains of linguistic brilliance [because] the reader never really meets, gets inside of, or cares about the people. Dazzling, genius-driven — and, alas, often tedious." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Ben Marcus's novel is funny and touching and full of movement and sound, all of which is even more remarkable since the book itself is about stillnesses and The Silentists and Behavior Water and things you put in your mouth to keep you from speaking. Marcus investigates — with equal passion — the intricacies of a new mythology alongside the intimacies of a broken family. This is the kind of strange and beautiful book you just want to have around, to dip into again and again." Aimee Bender

Review:

"[A] stunning, strange and beautiful novel." Esquire

Review:

"Imagine The World According to Garp as rewritten by Edward Gorey....Marcus's prose can spiral up and away into sublime nonsense." Village Voice Literary Supplement

Review:

"Ben Marcus's first novel Notable American Women is a beautifully strange and compelling family allegory — Midwest mum and dad raise their son to shun all emotions — rendered in language that seems imported from a universe of deepest feeling, of intellect, of poetry, and, in the end, of majestic heart." Elle

Review:

"[A] darkly funny caricature of modern life." Time Out New York

Review:

"Ben Marcus has created an innovative and unflinching portrait of the turmoil of the human condition, providing the reader a most rare gift: something truly new. Notable American Women contains strains of Donald Antrim and Samuel Beckett but is beholden to neither; it is a brave, original book." Myla Goldberg

Synopsis:

The acclaimed author of "The Age of Wire and String" writes an allegory of the power and impotence of modern women. On a farm in "Ohio, " a mother and father attempt to raise a boy without feelings. He tells the only story a boy with no feelings can, until the arrival of Jane Dark, whose fierce belief in Silence brings the family to a terrible crisis.

About the Author

Ben Marcus is author of a novel, Notable American Women, to be published by Vintage in March, and a book of stories, The Age of Wire and String. Artspace Books will publish his collaboration with the painter Matthew Ritchie, The Father Costume. He has published fiction in Harper's, McSweeney's, Grand Street, BOMB, Conjunctions, Fence and Tin House.

Before joining the faculty at Columbia University, where he is an assistant professor in the graduate writing program, he taught for three years at Brown. He is the recipient of a Whiting Writers Award, an NEA in fiction, and two Pushcart prizes. He is the fiction editor of Fence magazine, and he has reviewed books and written essays for Time magazine, Feed, the Village Voice, and Salon.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375713781
Author:
Marcus, Ben
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Location:
New York
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Emotions
Subject:
Young men
Subject:
Psychological fiction
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
fiction;novel
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage Contemporaries Original
Series Volume:
no. 1
Publication Date:
20020331
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.00x5.36x.56 in. .55 lbs.

Other books you might like

  1. CivilWarLand in Bad Decline: Stories... Used Trade Paper $8.00
  2. The Neal Pollack Anthology of...
    Used Hardcover $3.95
  3. The Age of Wire and String (American... Used Trade Paper $7.00
  4. The Pharmacist's Mate: A Tale of... Used Trade Paper $2.95
  5. The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil
    Sale Trade Paper $7.98
  6. On the Nature of Human Romantic...
    Used Trade Paper $8.00

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture

Notable American Women Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$10.50 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780375713781 Reviews:
"Review A Day" by , "The central plot of the book concerns the actions of a woman named Jane Dark, whose cult-like female following seeks to attain perfect stillness and silence. She confines Ben's father to a hole guarded by Larry the Punisher and orders Ben to be a mating 'sire' for the Silentists and 'various women's militia that came through town.' Marcus includes historical timelines and definitions of terms throughout to help make this somewhat difficult book easier to follow, and the straight-faced weaving of his tale makes it all the more funny. For all the work a reader must put into grasping Marcus's weird world, the payoff is one that the reader will keep for a long time." (read the entire Powells.com review)
"Review" by , "Marcus negotiates an esoteric though uniquely American literary terrain....Marcus reinvents the family drama....The book evokes an alternate reality revealing the dark side of our common history, an...America that exists [only] in Marcus's lyrical, abstract prose. This will be a difficult read for many, but it will surely stand the test of time as a genuinely important book."
"Review" by , "Conceptual daring, deadpan humor, and dizzying forays into allegory mark Marcus's first novel....Marcus has crafted a dystopian novel in the tradition of Brave New World and 1984....Ambitious and polished, if sometimes willfully opaque, this is an intriguing debut."
"Review" by , "Marcus follows up his extraordinary The Age of Wire and String with something of a disappointment. The verbal wizardry is still there, but the content has grown coquettish and slightened....The author's wit can still capture perfect tens....But ennui can set in...amid these fountains of linguistic brilliance [because] the reader never really meets, gets inside of, or cares about the people. Dazzling, genius-driven — and, alas, often tedious."
"Review" by , "Ben Marcus's novel is funny and touching and full of movement and sound, all of which is even more remarkable since the book itself is about stillnesses and The Silentists and Behavior Water and things you put in your mouth to keep you from speaking. Marcus investigates — with equal passion — the intricacies of a new mythology alongside the intimacies of a broken family. This is the kind of strange and beautiful book you just want to have around, to dip into again and again."
"Review" by , "[A] stunning, strange and beautiful novel."
"Review" by , "Imagine The World According to Garp as rewritten by Edward Gorey....Marcus's prose can spiral up and away into sublime nonsense."
"Review" by , "Ben Marcus's first novel Notable American Women is a beautifully strange and compelling family allegory — Midwest mum and dad raise their son to shun all emotions — rendered in language that seems imported from a universe of deepest feeling, of intellect, of poetry, and, in the end, of majestic heart."
"Review" by , "[A] darkly funny caricature of modern life."
"Review" by , "Ben Marcus has created an innovative and unflinching portrait of the turmoil of the human condition, providing the reader a most rare gift: something truly new. Notable American Women contains strains of Donald Antrim and Samuel Beckett but is beholden to neither; it is a brave, original book."
"Synopsis" by , The acclaimed author of "The Age of Wire and String" writes an allegory of the power and impotence of modern women. On a farm in "Ohio, " a mother and father attempt to raise a boy without feelings. He tells the only story a boy with no feelings can, until the arrival of Jane Dark, whose fierce belief in Silence brings the family to a terrible crisis.
spacer
spacer
  • back to top

FOLLOW US ON...

     
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.