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The City of Your Final Destinationby Peter Cameron
Synopses & Reviews
A wryly humorous, impeccably observed novel about the capriciousness of loveOmar Razaghi posts a letter on September 13, 1995 that will change the course of his life forever. A doctoral student at the University of Kansas, he writes to the estate of the Latin American author Jules Gund, requesting permission to write Gund's authorized biography. His request is refused, but Omar has already accepted a fellowship from the university, and with his girlfriend's vehement encouragement, he goes in person to Uruguay to petition to Gund's three executors. Although Caroline Gund, Jules' wife, and Arden Langdon, Jules' mistress and mother of his child, are initially opposed to the idea of a biography, Omar has the support of Adam, Jules' older brother, and hopes to be able to persuade the two women. Omar's unexpected arrival in Uruguay reverberates through this odd and isolated little family group, and his stay in the languid, dreamy Ochos Rios makes him question his former life in Kansas, and his ability-even his desire-to write an "authorized" life. A novel about the random nature of love, and the ways in which we confront or avoid life's choices, The City of Your Final Destination is a touching, clever and wonderfully comic fourth novel from Peter Cameron.
"Cameron...demonstrates a carefully honed style, an eye for insight and humor, and an ability to create a story that is both substantial and aesthetically pleasing." Library Journal
"Intriguing....Singular....An English drawing room comedy [with] a touch of Rattigan or Wilde." Lavina Greenlaw, The New York Times Book Review
"Wonderful...lithe and supple...one of the most satisfying denouements in recent memory." John Freeman, San Francisco Chronicle
"[With] dancelike wit...Manners and morals, a combinant phrase long out of fashion, finds exhilarating rebirth in City." Richard Eder, The New York Times
"[E]xceptionally moving and self-assured....Witty, intelligent, engrossing: Cameron offers a leisurely and old-fashioned narrative that nonetheless moves directly to a surprising but credible end." Kirkus Reviews
"Cause for celebration....A beautiful and elegant novel, [this] has the lightness and airiness of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream." James Schiff, The Raleigh News & Observer
Omar Razaghi, a twenty-eight-year-old doctoral student at the University of Kansas, has won a grant to write a biography of Jules Gund, a deceased Latin American writer. There's just one obstacle: Gund's family has not given him authorization. Undeterred, Omar travels to Uruguay, unannounced, to petition the author's three executors in person: Gund's widow, his much younger mistress, and his brother. Omar's arrival sets in motion a series of events that upsets the precarious balance of life at Ochos Rios, the family's crumbling estate. As long-standing relationships undergo seismic shifts and force the time-stuck inhabitants of Ochos Rios to look toward that most dreaded of places: the future. The City of Your Final Destination explores the examined and unexamined life of writers and their subjects with wit and pathos in a "pungent, airy, grave, and transpoting commedia dell'arte" (The New York Times Book Review).
When student Omar Razaghi receives a grant to write a biography of a deceasedLatin American writer, he embarks on a journey that will change the course ofhis life forever.
About the Author
Peter Cameron is the author of Andorra, The Weekend, and the short story collections One Way or Another and Far-Flung, the best stories of which are collected in The Half You Don't Know (all available in Plume editions). His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Grand Street, and The Paris Review. He also works for the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. He makes his home in New York City.
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