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The Water Cure: A Novel

by

The Water Cure: A Novel Cover

ISBN13: 9781555974763
ISBN10: 1555974767
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

I am guilty not because of my actions, to which I freely admit, but for my accession, admission, confession that I executed these actions with not only deliberation and premeditation but with zeal and paroxysm and purpose....The true answer to your question is shorter than the lie. Did you? I did.

This is a confession of a victim turned villain. When Ishmael Kidder's eleven-year-old daughter is brutally murdered, it stands to reason that he must take revenge by any means necessary. The punishment is carried out without guilt, and with the usual equipment — duct tape, rope, and superglue. But the tools of psychological torture prove to be the most devastating of all.

Percival Everett's most lacerating indictment to date, The Water Cure follows the gruesome reasoning and execution of revenge in a society that has lost a common moral ground, where rules are meaningless. A master storyteller, Everett draws upon disparate elements of Western philosophy, language theory, and military intelligence reports to create a terrifying story of loss, anger, and helplessness in our modern world. This is a timely and important novel that confronts the dark legacy of the Bush years and the state of America today.

Review:

"In this latest tense salvo from the author of Wounded and Erasure, Ishmael Kidder-divorced, self-loathing, and distrustful of government and restaurants-lives on a mountain outside of Taos, New Mexico, writing romance novels under the name Estelle Gilliam. When his 11-year-old daughter Lane is brutally murdered, Ishmael's already fragile world implodes, and revenge becomes his only salve. Having kidnapped and tortured the man he believes to be Lane's killer, he writes a confession and manifesto, which Everett delivers as this novel. Composed in text fragments and illustrations, Ishmael's ponderous rant covers everything from semiotics and Greek philosophy to deception and the Iraq War. Scenes of torture and grief are affecting but surprisingly few, and scant time is devoted to the captor-captive relationship, or any relationship, other than Ishmael's with words. Many of his fragments are nearly indecipherable, as he inverts sentences and misspells words to contend with the failures of language and meaning, and by extension sanity, morality and law. While Everett's aims are imaginatively and intellectually rigorous, the novel's tangle of emotion and strained logic ultimately frustrate the reader more than illuminate Ishmael's plight. The best scenes, however, relate wry but beautiful moments of civic and domestic tenderness in language that is musical and sure." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"The narrator of 'The Water Cure' is a man whose 11-year-old daughter has been raped and killed. He now is in the process of torturing her murderer, but this, as they say, is only the tip of the iceberg. True, as a subject it's plenty disturbing in itself, but through a variety of devices — including drawings, mini-lectures on language, philosophy, politics, theology and nature, and even excerpts... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"If Percival Everett isn't already a household name, it's because people are more interested in politics than truth." Madison Smartt Bell

Review:

"Percival Everett is a genius. He's a brilliant writer and so damn smart I envy him." Terry McMillan

Review:

"A sharp satirical voice only predictable in its provocation." Playboy Magazine

Review:

"Some readers will resist this, balking at the nonlinear, often nonsensical words on the page. For others who don't mind leaving the tidy structure of mainstream fiction, The Water Cure can be a bold adventure into the darkness of one man's heart." San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"Daring, exasperating and occasionally brilliant, The Water Cure works best neither as political diatribe nor as psychological study but as the extended solo of a ravenous, indignant mind." Los Angeles Times

Synopsis:

Everett's lacerating novel follows the gruesome reasoning and execution of revenge in a society that has lost a common moral ground, where rules are meaningless. A master storyteller, the author creates a terrifying story of loss, anger, and helplessness in the modern world.

Synopsis:

I am guilty not because of my actions, to which I freely admit, but for my accession, admission, confession that I

executed these actions with not only deliberation and

premeditation but with zeal and paroxysm and purpose . . .

The true answer to your question is shorter than the lie.

Did you? I did.

 
This is a confession of a victim turned villain. When Ishmael Kidder's eleven-year-old daughter is brutally murdered, it stands to reason that he must take revenge by any means necessary. The punishment is carried out without guilt, and with the usual equipment--duct tape, rope, and superglue. But the tools of psychological torture prove to be the most devastating of all.

Percival Everett's most lacerating indictment to date, The Water Cure follows the gruesome reasoning and execution of revenge in a society that has lost a common moral ground, where rules are meaningless. A master storyteller, Everett draws upon disparate elements of Western philosophy, language theory, and military intelligence reports to create a terrifying story of loss, anger, and helplessness in our modern world. This is a timely and important novel that confronts the dark legacy of the Bush years and the state of America today.

About the Author

Percival Everett is a professor of English at the University of Southern California and the author of sixteen books, including American Desert, Erasure, and Glyph. He lives in Los Angeles.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Roger Sarao, November 19, 2007 (view all comments by Roger Sarao)
This was the first book by Percival Everett that I read. Although I consider myself a fan of "experimental" fiction, I cannot recommend this book as an introduction to Everett's works. There are moments of brilliance, to be sure, but on the whole the story about a man's revenge on the person believed to have killed his daughter is too disjointed and too internalized to pull the reader in. Perhaps I started reading Everett with a book that those more familiar with his style will savor. Someday I may attempt another novel of his, if only because I appreciate the efforts of an author with an original voice in today's vapid literary landscape.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781555974763
Subtitle:
A Novel
Publisher:
Graywolf Press
Author:
Everett, Percival
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Murder
Subject:
Revenge
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
August 21, 2007
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
9.44 x 6.12 x 0.975 in

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Water Cure: A Novel
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 256 pages Graywolf Press - English 9781555974763 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In this latest tense salvo from the author of Wounded and Erasure, Ishmael Kidder-divorced, self-loathing, and distrustful of government and restaurants-lives on a mountain outside of Taos, New Mexico, writing romance novels under the name Estelle Gilliam. When his 11-year-old daughter Lane is brutally murdered, Ishmael's already fragile world implodes, and revenge becomes his only salve. Having kidnapped and tortured the man he believes to be Lane's killer, he writes a confession and manifesto, which Everett delivers as this novel. Composed in text fragments and illustrations, Ishmael's ponderous rant covers everything from semiotics and Greek philosophy to deception and the Iraq War. Scenes of torture and grief are affecting but surprisingly few, and scant time is devoted to the captor-captive relationship, or any relationship, other than Ishmael's with words. Many of his fragments are nearly indecipherable, as he inverts sentences and misspells words to contend with the failures of language and meaning, and by extension sanity, morality and law. While Everett's aims are imaginatively and intellectually rigorous, the novel's tangle of emotion and strained logic ultimately frustrate the reader more than illuminate Ishmael's plight. The best scenes, however, relate wry but beautiful moments of civic and domestic tenderness in language that is musical and sure." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "If Percival Everett isn't already a household name, it's because people are more interested in politics than truth."
"Review" by , "Percival Everett is a genius. He's a brilliant writer and so damn smart I envy him."
"Review" by , "A sharp satirical voice only predictable in its provocation."
"Review" by , "Some readers will resist this, balking at the nonlinear, often nonsensical words on the page. For others who don't mind leaving the tidy structure of mainstream fiction, The Water Cure can be a bold adventure into the darkness of one man's heart."
"Review" by , "Daring, exasperating and occasionally brilliant, The Water Cure works best neither as political diatribe nor as psychological study but as the extended solo of a ravenous, indignant mind."
"Synopsis" by , Everett's lacerating novel follows the gruesome reasoning and execution of revenge in a society that has lost a common moral ground, where rules are meaningless. A master storyteller, the author creates a terrifying story of loss, anger, and helplessness in the modern world.
"Synopsis" by ,
I am guilty not because of my actions, to which I freely admit, but for my accession, admission, confession that I

executed these actions with not only deliberation and

premeditation but with zeal and paroxysm and purpose . . .

The true answer to your question is shorter than the lie.

Did you? I did.

 
This is a confession of a victim turned villain. When Ishmael Kidder's eleven-year-old daughter is brutally murdered, it stands to reason that he must take revenge by any means necessary. The punishment is carried out without guilt, and with the usual equipment--duct tape, rope, and superglue. But the tools of psychological torture prove to be the most devastating of all.

Percival Everett's most lacerating indictment to date, The Water Cure follows the gruesome reasoning and execution of revenge in a society that has lost a common moral ground, where rules are meaningless. A master storyteller, Everett draws upon disparate elements of Western philosophy, language theory, and military intelligence reports to create a terrifying story of loss, anger, and helplessness in our modern world. This is a timely and important novel that confronts the dark legacy of the Bush years and the state of America today.

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