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Wrack and Ruin

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Wrack and Ruin Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

An exhilarating comic satire with the quirky energy of The Wonder Boys and Sideways.

Lyndon Song, a renowned sculptor, has fled New York City to become a Brussels sprouts farmer in the small California town of Rosarita Bay. Lyndon has a brother, Woody, an indicted financier turned movie producer, and Woody has a plan, involving a golf-course resort on Lyndon's land and an aging kung-fu diva from Hong Kong with a mean kick and a meaner drinking problem.

A dreadlocked buddy with an artificial leg, a small plot of exceptionally lush marijuana, two field biologists studying western snowy plovers, a disgraced museum curator, and Lyndon's great love, the impulsive mayor of Rosarita Bay — these are only some of the complications in Lyndon and Woody's lives over one madcap Labor Day weekend.

Hilarious and philosophical, this many-hued novel about the landscape of contemporary "multicultural" America is critically acclaimed Don Lee's best book yet.

Review:

"The trick to reading Don Lee's wonderfully silly second novel (after Country of Origin and a story collection, Yellow) is to take nothing seriously, even when you should. The book concerns the eccentric sculptor-turned-brussels sprout farmer, Lyndon Song, and his estranged brother, Woody, an uptight Hollywood producer. Lyndon's refusal to sell his farmland to a golf course developer results in an unwelcome visit from his brother, who has been secretly hired by the developer. The author has corralled an array of misfits and minor characters — Lyndon's friend Juju, a philosophizing surfer with a prosthetic limb, and Yi Ling Ling, a has-been kung fu film star — to season the backdrop of the brothers' misadventures and muster up some drama and didactic spiritualism. The novel's best sections are lighthearted in their delivery, but hint at deeper substance and self-reflection. At times the author starts pulling too adamantly at readers' heartstrings, but before long he's back to slathering on the sarcasm. This novel thrives on unlikely unions, unseemly humor and happy endings while maintaining a constant examination of family and identity, in keeping with the themes of the author's previous book." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

In his masterly "Wrack and Ruin," Don Lee gives us the lighter side of Rosarita Bay, the fictional California town that was the setting for his equally fine short-story collection, "Yellow." When his protagonist, Lyndon Song, first moved there, Lee writes, "it had been a sleepy little backwater with a population of ten thousand ... a wonderfully sad, forlorn, gone-to-seed town with gone-to-seed inhabitants,... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"[W]armly humorous...entertaining....An eccentric cast of secondary characters...adds to the merriment in a highly appealing novel that swerves ever so gracefully from rollicking humor to poignant moments of reflection." Booklist

Review:

"[A]n anarchic energy emerges....Over-the-top complications sometimes get in the way of Lee's wry commentary on contemporary life." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Lee's novel tries to be a wacky, madcap Carl Hiaasen kind of page-turner....Though sometimes fun, it's not that successful; the wackiness seems to take away from rather than complement its meditations." Library Journal

Synopsis:

Wrack and Ruin is an exhilarating comic satire. Hilarious and philosophical, this many-hued novel about the landscape of contemporary "multicultural" America is critically acclaimed author Lee's best book yet.

Synopsis:

'Lee has outdone himself here. His prose moves and sparkles.' '"Washington Post

Synopsis:

Lyndon Song, a renowned sculptor, has fled New York City to become a Brussels sprouts farmer in the small California town of Rosarita Bay. Lyndon has a brother, Woody, an indicted financier turned movie producer, and Woody has a plan, involving a golf-course resort on Lyndon's land and an aging kung-fu diva from Hong Kong with a mean kick and a meaner drinking problem.

A dreadlocked buddy with an artificial leg, a small plot of exceptionally lush marijuana, two field biologists studying western snowy plovers, a disgraced museum curator, and Lyndon's great love, the impulsive mayor of Rosarita Bay-these are only some of the complications in Lyndon and Woody's lives over one madcap Labor Day weekend.

Hilarious and philosophical, this many-hued novel about the landscape of contemporary "multicultural" America is critically acclaimed Don Lee's best book yet.

Synopsis:

Lyndon Song is a renowned sculptor who fled New York City to become a Brussels sprouts farmer in the small California town of Rosarita Bay. Lyndon has a brother, Woody, an indicted financier turned movie producer, and Woody has a plan involving a golf course on Lyndon"s land and an aging kung-fu diva from Hong Kong with a mean kick and an even meaner drinking problem. Over one madcap Labor Day weekend, this plan wreaks havoc on Lyndon"s bucolic and carefully managed life'"leading to various crises, adventures, and literature"s first-ever windsurfing chase scene.

'A highly appealing novel that swerves ever so gracefully from rollicking humor to poignant moments of reflection' (Booklist), this hilarious and philosophical novel about the landscape of contemporary 'multicultural' America is Don Lee"s best book yet.

About the Author

Don Lee teaches creative writing at Macalester College and lives in St. Paul, Minnesota. His story collection Yellow won the Sue Kaufman Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and his novel Country of Origin won an American Book Award and the Edgar Award for Best First Novel.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780393062328
Author:
Lee, Don
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company
Subject:
Brothers
Subject:
Sculptors
Subject:
General
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
California
Subject:
Humorous fiction
Subject:
Humorous
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Publication Date:
April 2008
Binding:
Hardcover
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
8.6 x 5.8 x 1.2 in 1.07 lb

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Wrack and Ruin Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.50 In Stock
Product details 336 pages W. W. Norton & Company - English 9780393062328 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The trick to reading Don Lee's wonderfully silly second novel (after Country of Origin and a story collection, Yellow) is to take nothing seriously, even when you should. The book concerns the eccentric sculptor-turned-brussels sprout farmer, Lyndon Song, and his estranged brother, Woody, an uptight Hollywood producer. Lyndon's refusal to sell his farmland to a golf course developer results in an unwelcome visit from his brother, who has been secretly hired by the developer. The author has corralled an array of misfits and minor characters — Lyndon's friend Juju, a philosophizing surfer with a prosthetic limb, and Yi Ling Ling, a has-been kung fu film star — to season the backdrop of the brothers' misadventures and muster up some drama and didactic spiritualism. The novel's best sections are lighthearted in their delivery, but hint at deeper substance and self-reflection. At times the author starts pulling too adamantly at readers' heartstrings, but before long he's back to slathering on the sarcasm. This novel thrives on unlikely unions, unseemly humor and happy endings while maintaining a constant examination of family and identity, in keeping with the themes of the author's previous book." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "[W]armly humorous...entertaining....An eccentric cast of secondary characters...adds to the merriment in a highly appealing novel that swerves ever so gracefully from rollicking humor to poignant moments of reflection."
"Review" by , "[A]n anarchic energy emerges....Over-the-top complications sometimes get in the way of Lee's wry commentary on contemporary life."
"Review" by , "Lee's novel tries to be a wacky, madcap Carl Hiaasen kind of page-turner....Though sometimes fun, it's not that successful; the wackiness seems to take away from rather than complement its meditations."
"Synopsis" by , Wrack and Ruin is an exhilarating comic satire. Hilarious and philosophical, this many-hued novel about the landscape of contemporary "multicultural" America is critically acclaimed author Lee's best book yet.
"Synopsis" by , 'Lee has outdone himself here. His prose moves and sparkles.' '"Washington Post
"Synopsis" by , Lyndon Song, a renowned sculptor, has fled New York City to become a Brussels sprouts farmer in the small California town of Rosarita Bay. Lyndon has a brother, Woody, an indicted financier turned movie producer, and Woody has a plan, involving a golf-course resort on Lyndon's land and an aging kung-fu diva from Hong Kong with a mean kick and a meaner drinking problem.

A dreadlocked buddy with an artificial leg, a small plot of exceptionally lush marijuana, two field biologists studying western snowy plovers, a disgraced museum curator, and Lyndon's great love, the impulsive mayor of Rosarita Bay-these are only some of the complications in Lyndon and Woody's lives over one madcap Labor Day weekend.

Hilarious and philosophical, this many-hued novel about the landscape of contemporary "multicultural" America is critically acclaimed Don Lee's best book yet.
"Synopsis" by , Lyndon Song is a renowned sculptor who fled New York City to become a Brussels sprouts farmer in the small California town of Rosarita Bay. Lyndon has a brother, Woody, an indicted financier turned movie producer, and Woody has a plan involving a golf course on Lyndon"s land and an aging kung-fu diva from Hong Kong with a mean kick and an even meaner drinking problem. Over one madcap Labor Day weekend, this plan wreaks havoc on Lyndon"s bucolic and carefully managed life'"leading to various crises, adventures, and literature"s first-ever windsurfing chase scene.

'A highly appealing novel that swerves ever so gracefully from rollicking humor to poignant moments of reflection' (Booklist), this hilarious and philosophical novel about the landscape of contemporary 'multicultural' America is Don Lee"s best book yet.

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