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The Puttermesser Papersby Cynthia Ozick
Synopses & Reviews
With dashing originality and in prose that sings like an entire choir of sirens, Cynthia Ozick relates the life and times of her most compelling fictional creation. Ruth Puttermesser lives in New York City. Her learning is monumental. Her love life is minimal (she prefers pouring through Plato to romping with married Morris Rappoport). And her fantasies have a disconcerting tendency to come true — with disastrous consequences for what we laughably call "reality."
Puttermesser yearns for a daughter and promptly creates one, unassisted, in the form of the first recorded female golem. Laboring in the dusty crevices of the civil service, she dreams of reforming the city — and manages to get herself elected mayor. Puttermesser contemplates the afterlife and is hurtled into it headlong, only to discover that a paradise found is also paradise lost. Overflowing with ideas, lambent with wit, The Puttermesser Papers is a tour de force by one of our most visionary novelists.
"The finest achievement of Ozick's career...It has all the buoyant integrity of a Chagall painting." San Francisco Chronicle
"Fanciful, poignant...so intelligent, so finely expressed that, like its main character, it remains endearing, edifying, a spark of light in the gloom." The New York Times
"A crazy delight." The New York Time Book Review
"Brilliant on every page...This book leaves the reader in a trance of happiness." Carol Shields
"Deliciously comic and subtle...funny and cutting...[Ozick] turns a keen satire into a universal fable. Remarkable." New York Daily News
"Beautifully written...consistently witty, whimsical and uncompromising." Washington Post
"Puttermesser's life is strangely rich, wildly amusing, full of unexpected delights — and so is Ozick's book." Chicago Tribune
"With her fine gifts of drama, of detail, and her lively philosophical imagination, Cynthia Ozick has written an exemplary novel." Boston Book Review
"One of the finest and most imaginative writers of our time." St Louis Post-Dispatch
"A magician...a literary alchemist...brilliant." USA Today
One of our most dazzlingly inventive novelists relates the life and times of her most compelling fictional creation, a character who suggests a brainy brainchild of Saul Bellow, Isaac Bashevis Singer, and George Eliot.
Ruth Puttermesser lives in New York, in whose dusty civil service she for a time labors. Her learning is monumental; her love life is minimal; and her idlest fantasies have a disconcerting tendency to burst forth into the real world. Thus, Puttermesser longs for a daughter and creates a female goleta from the earth of her potted plants. She dreams of civic reform and finds herself elected mayor. Puttermesser contemplates the afterlife and is hurried into it headlong, only to discover that paradise found is also paradise lost. Overflowing with ideas, lambent with wit, The Puttermesser Papers is a literary tour de force.
About the Author
Cynthia Ozick lives in Westchester County, New York.
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