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The Barnum Museum (American Literature)

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The Barnum Museum (American Literature) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The Barnum Museum is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of short stories. Within its pages, note such sights as: a study of the motives and strategies used by the participants in the game of Clue, including the seduction of Miss Scarlet by Colonel Mustard; the Barnum Museum, a fantastic, monstrous landmark so compelling that an entire town finds its citizens gradually and inexorably disappearing into it; a bored dilettante who constructs an imaginary woman — and loses her to an imaginary man! — and a legendary magician so skilled at sleight-of-hand that he is pursued by police for the crime of erasing the line between the real and the conjured.

Ingeniously written and orchestrated, each exhibit in The Barnum Museum will compel you to continue, each story becoming a lure to the next.

Review:

"Stunningly clever and thought-provoking....Millhauser is a brilliant stylist who can shift voices like a good ventriloquist." The Milwaukee Journal

Review:

"Elegantly told, charming stories." New York Times

Review:

"Imagine a funhouse gallery for fictive techniques and ideas, and you'll have some sense of these stories....Invites comparison with the work of Robertson Davies....A distinctive mix of stylistic dazzle and erudite wonder." Library Journal

Review:

"A stunning paean to the power of imagination....Certainly the work of one of our best writers at the top of his form....So convincing that the most skeptical reader will be swept away." San Francisco Chronicle

Synopsis:

Millhauser has pursued--and perfected--a narrative mode that comes out of the European romantic tradition by way of Edgar Allan Poe. . . . His stylized elegance is reminiscent of Borges and Nabokov. . . . His stories are paeans to the imagination, their magic stemming from the human mind's zest for creating marvels. . . . Graced with a powerful sense of humor.A writer who vivifies the act of reading. . . Like Borges (and Italo Calvino), he takes us inside the labyrinth of prose.Imagine a funhouse gallery for fictive techniques and ideas, and you'll have some sense of these stories. . . . Invites comparison with the work of Robertson Davies. . . . A distinctive mix of stylistic dazzle and erudite wonder.The sentences are of Cartesian clarity. . . . Irresistible. . . . Think of these stories as literary fairy tales, lost characters from The Arabian Nights, the further ghost stories of an antiquary, the slightly etiolated blooms of a late Romantic imagination. Steven Millhauser is, all in all, a wonderfully appropriate writer for our very own fin de siecle.His best, most resonant stories, like those of Kafka, Borges, and Calvino, remind us that good works of fiction are, among other things, fables. . . . Some of Millhauser's stories bring to mind the somber ironies of Kafka and Borges, but in general his imagination has a light, serene quality--the quality of a precocious child's delight in his own ingenuity. . . . Purely enchanting.Stunningly clever and thought-provoking . . . Millhauser is a brilliant stylist who can shift voices like a good ventriloquist.Staggering. . . . With his doppelgangers and children's games, thaumaturgical hauntings and junkshop catalogues, Steven Millhauser may well be American literature's last Romantic, its sole remaining wanderer through the troubled borderland between mundane reality and the world of art.

Synopsis:

The Barnum Museum is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of short stories. Within its pages, note such sights as: a study of the motives and strategies used by the participants in the game of Clue, including the seduction of Miss Scarlet by Colonel Mustard; the Barnum Museum, a fantastic, monstrous landmark so compelling that an entire town finds its citizens gradually and inexorably disappearing into it; a bored dilettante who constructs an imaginary woman--and loses her to an imaginary man!--and a legendary magician so skilled at sleight-of-hand that he is pursued by police for the crime of erasing the line between the real and the conjured.

Ingeniously written and orchestrated, each exhibit in The Barnum Museum will compel you to continue, each story becoming a lure to the next.

Synopsis:

"The Barnum Museum" is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of stories. "What a pleasure it is to read a writer this good", wrote Peter Straub.

About the Author

Steven Millhauser was born in 1943 in New York City, and grew up in Connecticut. He received a B.A. from Columbia University in 1965, and went on to pursue a doctorate in English at Brown University. He never completed his dissertation, but did complete a novel that was eventually published in a pared-down form under the title From the Realm of Morpheus--as well as Edwin Mullhouse. However, it was for his stories that Millhauser became best known; immaculately written, curiously vivid, they trod on fantastic boards in a manner reminiscent of Poe or Borges, but with a distinctively American voice. After In the Penny Arcade, Millhauser's collections continued with The Barnum Museum (1990), Little Kingdoms (1993), and The Knife Thrower and Other Stories (1998). Steven Millhauser lives in Saratoga Springs, New York, and teaches at Skidmore College.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781564781796
Author:
Millhauser, Steven
Publisher:
Dalkey Archive Press
Author:
Milhauser, Steven
Location:
Normal, IL
Subject:
General
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Short Stories (single author)
Subject:
Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1
Edition Description:
Dalkey Archive Dalkey Archive
Series:
American Literature Series
Series Volume:
CM-91
Publication Date:
19970914
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
240
Dimensions:
8.47x5.54x.71 in. .79 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Barnum Museum (American Literature) Used Trade Paper
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$6.95 In Stock
Product details 240 pages Dalkey Archive Press - English 9781564781796 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Stunningly clever and thought-provoking....Millhauser is a brilliant stylist who can shift voices like a good ventriloquist."
"Review" by , "Elegantly told, charming stories."
"Review" by , "Imagine a funhouse gallery for fictive techniques and ideas, and you'll have some sense of these stories....Invites comparison with the work of Robertson Davies....A distinctive mix of stylistic dazzle and erudite wonder."
"Review" by , "A stunning paean to the power of imagination....Certainly the work of one of our best writers at the top of his form....So convincing that the most skeptical reader will be swept away."
"Synopsis" by , Millhauser has pursued--and perfected--a narrative mode that comes out of the European romantic tradition by way of Edgar Allan Poe. . . . His stylized elegance is reminiscent of Borges and Nabokov. . . . His stories are paeans to the imagination, their magic stemming from the human mind's zest for creating marvels. . . . Graced with a powerful sense of humor.A writer who vivifies the act of reading. . . Like Borges (and Italo Calvino), he takes us inside the labyrinth of prose.Imagine a funhouse gallery for fictive techniques and ideas, and you'll have some sense of these stories. . . . Invites comparison with the work of Robertson Davies. . . . A distinctive mix of stylistic dazzle and erudite wonder.The sentences are of Cartesian clarity. . . . Irresistible. . . . Think of these stories as literary fairy tales, lost characters from The Arabian Nights, the further ghost stories of an antiquary, the slightly etiolated blooms of a late Romantic imagination. Steven Millhauser is, all in all, a wonderfully appropriate writer for our very own fin de siecle.His best, most resonant stories, like those of Kafka, Borges, and Calvino, remind us that good works of fiction are, among other things, fables. . . . Some of Millhauser's stories bring to mind the somber ironies of Kafka and Borges, but in general his imagination has a light, serene quality--the quality of a precocious child's delight in his own ingenuity. . . . Purely enchanting.Stunningly clever and thought-provoking . . . Millhauser is a brilliant stylist who can shift voices like a good ventriloquist.Staggering. . . . With his doppelgangers and children's games, thaumaturgical hauntings and junkshop catalogues, Steven Millhauser may well be American literature's last Romantic, its sole remaining wanderer through the troubled borderland between mundane reality and the world of art.
"Synopsis" by , The Barnum Museum is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of short stories. Within its pages, note such sights as: a study of the motives and strategies used by the participants in the game of Clue, including the seduction of Miss Scarlet by Colonel Mustard; the Barnum Museum, a fantastic, monstrous landmark so compelling that an entire town finds its citizens gradually and inexorably disappearing into it; a bored dilettante who constructs an imaginary woman--and loses her to an imaginary man!--and a legendary magician so skilled at sleight-of-hand that he is pursued by police for the crime of erasing the line between the real and the conjured.

Ingeniously written and orchestrated, each exhibit in The Barnum Museum will compel you to continue, each story becoming a lure to the next.
"Synopsis" by , "The Barnum Museum" is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of stories. "What a pleasure it is to read a writer this good", wrote Peter Straub.
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