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I'll Let You Goby Bruce Wagner
Synopses & Reviews
Twelve-year-old Toulouse “Tull” Trotter lives on his grandfathers vast Bel-Air parkland estate with his mother, the beautiful, drug-addicted Katrina—a landscape artist who specializes in topiary labyrinths. He spends most of his time with young cousins Lucy, “the girl detective,” and Edward, a prodigy undaunted by the disfiguring effects of Apert Syndrome. One day, an impulsive revelation by Lucy sets in motion a chain of events that changes Tull—and the Trotter family—forever.
In this latter-day Thousand and One Nights, a boy seeks his lost father and a woman finds her long-lost love . . . while a family of unimaginable wealth learns that its fate is bound up with two fugitives: Amaryllis, a street orphan who aspires to be a saint, and her protector, a homeless schizophrenic, clad in Victorian rags, who is accused of a horrifying crime.
"Mr. Wagner delineates his characters with such sympathy and verve, such a sharp eye for the status details that reveal their social standing...that they become palpable human beings....The plot too...might seem thoroughly implausible and unnecessarily complicated, and yet the author's coolly omniscient voice smooths over such doubts..." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"Wagner is doubtless a smart, talented writer, but there's a sense in which I'll Let You Go seems to be lacking in that most essential of writerly virtues, empathy. A monumentally ambitious but ultimately shallow book." Adrienne Miller, Esquire (read the entire Esquire review)
"[Wagner] slices open the self-satisfied bosom of Los Angeles yet again in his third novel, a sprawling family saga that trades the usual mush-mouthed sentimentalities for cascading shards of knife-edged vignettes. A masterful, modern-day fantasy of millionaires and madmen, fathers and sons, reality and dreams." Kirkus Reviews
"This time around, Wagner's observations of L.A.'s filthy rich are curiously torpid, probing little beyond their penchant for purchasing esoteric designer labels....In the end, Wagner's novel is less Dickens than a knockoff of Tom Wolfe...but the fustian language and over-the-top melodrama could translate well to the silver screen." Publishers Weekly
"This novel is an industrious endeavor, which could have been shortened about 100 pages, but there are so many interesting characters dynamically incorporated into its delightfully twisted plot, it's well worth the time." Elsa Gaztambide, Booklist
"A case of mistaken identity concerning William Morris, the Victorian poet and artist, and the Hollywood talent agency of the same name proves crucial in this smart, funny novel." Don McLeese, Book Magazine
"Lavishly imagined....Wagner [dares] his readers to be so callous as to question fiction's ability to imagine the impossible." The Boston Globe
"Wagner's astute portrayal of the follies of the rich is exceeded by his skill at rendering the lives of the poor. The chapters on Amaryllis...are worthy of a latter-day Dickens." The Washington Post
"Combines social satire on the scale of Thackeray's Vanity Fair with a hipness that has become Wagner's trademark." GQ
"A brash authorial voice...tinged with melancholy....[A] sincere exploration of life, death and immortality." People
In I'll Let You Go, a boy seeks his lost father and a woman finds her lost love; and a family of unimaginable wealth learns its fate is tied to those of a street orphan and the courtly, homeless, schizophrenic giant who protects her.
About the Author
Bruce Wagner is the author of the novels Force Majeure and I'm Losing You. He recently wrote and directed Women in Film, adapted from his novel I'm Losing You. Women in Film was shown at the Sundance and Venice film festivals in 2001. He lives in Los Angeles.
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