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I Know This Much Is True

by

I Know This Much Is True Cover

ISBN13: 9780060987565
ISBN10: 0060987561
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Plot Summary:
Wally Lamb's first novel, "She's Come Undone, received rave reviews when it was published in 1992. The book was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Awards' Art Seidenbaum Prize for First Fiction and was named as one of the most notable books of the year by numerous publications, including The New York Times Book Review and People magazine. A graduate of the Vermont College MFA in Writing program, Lamb currently teaches at the University of Connecticut. He is the recipient of an NEA grant for fiction and a Missouri Review William Peden fiction prize winner. A nationally honored teacher of writing, he lives in Connecticut with his wife and their three sons.

" Reading a novel is a highly personal experience and I think different readers will take different things from it. As for me, the experience of writing the book has reinforced for me the truths that Dominick had to learn: that love grows from forgiveness, that " mongrels" make good dogs, and that the roundness of life's design may be a sign that there is a presence beyond ourselves."
--From a recent interview with Wally Lamb,
author of "I Know This Much Is True

Topics for Discussion
As an award-winning teacher of writing, Wally Lamb has been honored for his exceptional ability to communicate the power and majesty of the written word to his students. Hoping to inspire thoughtful discourse on his own novel, Wally has graciously supplied these discussion questions.

1. Wally Lamb has said that what interested him most about his character, Dominick Birdsey, was the protagonist's conflictedness. Discuss some of the ways in which, as both child and adult, Dominick is pulled inopposing directions and wrestles with conflicting emotions.

2. How does this novel reflect the attitudes toward and the treatment of the mentally ill as they have evolved through the 20th century?

3. Do you see Dominick Birdsey as a hero or an anti-hero? Why?

4.The author has commented that his discovery of an ancient Hindu myth, " The King and the Corpse, " allowed him to discover, in turn, Dominick's story. In this ancient tale, a cadaver whispers riddles into the ears of a naive king and the solving of these puzzles allows the king to save himself. In what ways does the plot of "I Know This Much Is True follow a similar path?

5. Wally Lamb has said, " Whereas Dolores Price, the main character of my first novel, "She's Come Undone, deals with her pain and fear by imploding, Dominck tends to wrestle with pain and fear by exploding." Do females and males tend to respond differently to emotional pain? If so, why?

6. The principal female characters of this novel are Concettina Birdsey, Dessa Constantine, Lisa Sheffer, Dr. Rubina Patel, Ignazia Tempesta, and Prosperine Tucci (the monkey). Discuss I Know This Much Is True's depiction of women.

7.Wally Lamb has stated that a worthwhile novel should not only draw you into the story but also kick you in the pants so that you'll be more inclined to go out and fix the world. Do you agree or disagree?

8."I Know This Much Is True is in development as a major motion picture. If you were the casting director, which actors would you choose for the major roles?

9. Discuss the themes of mirror vs. images, wholeness vs. fragmentation, connection vs. separation as they are explored in "I Know This Much Is True.

10. To what extent is Dominick Birdsey's life shaped by his ethnicity? To what extent do you feel your life is defined by the place and the culture of your forebearers? Discuss.

Praise for the Book:
" The only bad thing about Wally Lamb's new book is that it's too good. One wouldn't cut a page from "I Know This Much is True, which is packed with graceful writing, unrelenting dramatic tension and characters who force the reader to form an emotional bond with them." --Denver Post

" Wally Lamb has done it again... he has another winner in "I Know This Much is True." --Tampa Tribune Times

" The novel quite deliberately assumes a darkly fated dimension that transforms an unhappy working-class New England family into mythic world archetypes... you couldn't ask for a more beguiling summer read. B+" --Entertainment Weekly

" Wally Lamb's latest novel is stunning--and even that might be an understatement." --The Associated Press

" A triumph of simple beauty." --Time

" It never grapples with anything less than life's biggest questions.... Lamb clearly aims to be a modern-day Dostoyevsky with a pop sensibility." --New York Times Book Review

" It's not just a book. It is a life experience." --Oprah Winfrey

" A work of astonishing craftsmanship.... Read it and weep." --St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Synopsis:

With his stunning debut novel, She's Come Undone, Wally Lamb won the adulation of critics and readers with his mesmerizing tale of one woman's painful yet triumphant journey of self-discovery. Now, this brilliantly talented writer returns with I Know This Much Is True, a heartbreaking and poignant multigenerational saga of the reproductive bonds of destruction and the powerful force of forgiveness. A masterpiece that breathtakingly tells a story of alienation and connection, power and abuse, devastation and renewal--this novel is a contemporary retelling of an ancient Hindu myth. A proud king must confront his demons to achieve salvation. Change yourself, the myth instructs, and you will inhabit a renovated world.

Synopsis:

Wally Lamb's success continues this May with the trade paperback edition of his widely acclaimed #1 bestseller--a heartbreaking story and multigenerational saga of the bonds of destruction and the power of forgiveness, witnessed through the eyes of identical twin brothers.

About the Author

Wally Lamb is the beloved author of She's Come Undoneand I Know This Much Is True.Both books were Oprah's Book Club selections and number one New York Timesbestsellers. Lamb is the volunteer facilitator of a writing workshop at York correctional Institution and is currently at work on his third novel. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, Christine, and their three sons.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

julieb43, October 26, 2012 (view all comments by julieb43)
I found the novel to be well-written with engaging characters, but overall too bloated at 900 pages. There are too many cliches, too many coincidences that rendered the book unsatisfactory in the end. I would have eliminated most of the memoir section, which recounted the siblings' grandfather's story from the 'old country.' It went on and on and wasn't that necessary to the overall plot.

I predicted several of the characters' outcomes in advance of the ending, hoping that they would not come true as they were so cliched--but they did.

Lamb seems to have thrown everything into this plot mix--identical twins; mental illness; SIDS; divorce; HIV; suicide; psychiatric institutions; therapy; abusive parents; identity crises; aboriginal rights; on and on, making this very melodramatic.

I credit Lamb for exploring mental illness's effects on a family, especially a sibling; I just wish he or his editor could have tightened up the story.
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liquid_gaze, October 23, 2009 (view all comments by liquid_gaze)
This book was indescribable. During my first read through I was in high school, and didn't absorb everything, but reading it again is so awe-inspiring. This is a very moving book that will make you hurt, smile, and think, again and again. I love this book and would recommend it to anyone looking for a truly epic read.
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(3 of 7 readers found this comment helpful)
neicybee, January 21, 2009 (view all comments by neicybee)
Aaahh...the creme de la creme! I LOVE this book! I finished reading its' almost 900 pages continuously one weekend and I have never stopped buying a copy of it every time I see it to pass on to friends, relatives, or random folks that ask me if I've read any good books lately! I want everyone to read it! Sad, frustrating, funny and sweet with an ending that is worthy of the story. Truely an engrossing read worth every page!
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(4 of 8 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 6 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780060987565
Author:
Lamb, Wally
Publisher:
Libri
Location:
New York, NY :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Twins
Subject:
New england
Subject:
Mentally ill
Subject:
Sagas
Subject:
Family saga
Subject:
Fathers and sons
Subject:
Brothers
Subject:
Italian americans
Subject:
Psychological fiction
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
Twins -- New England -- Fiction.
Subject:
Oprah's book club
Subject:
General Fiction
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1st pbk. ed.
Edition Description:
Paperback
Series:
Oprah's Book Club (Paperback)
Series Volume:
99-3
Publication Date:
May 1999
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
912
Dimensions:
8.02x5.27x1.55 in. 1.63 lbs.

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture

I Know This Much Is True Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 912 pages ReganBooks - English 9780060987565 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , With his stunning debut novel, She's Come Undone, Wally Lamb won the adulation of critics and readers with his mesmerizing tale of one woman's painful yet triumphant journey of self-discovery. Now, this brilliantly talented writer returns with I Know This Much Is True, a heartbreaking and poignant multigenerational saga of the reproductive bonds of destruction and the powerful force of forgiveness. A masterpiece that breathtakingly tells a story of alienation and connection, power and abuse, devastation and renewal--this novel is a contemporary retelling of an ancient Hindu myth. A proud king must confront his demons to achieve salvation. Change yourself, the myth instructs, and you will inhabit a renovated world.
"Synopsis" by , Wally Lamb's success continues this May with the trade paperback edition of his widely acclaimed #1 bestseller--a heartbreaking story and multigenerational saga of the bonds of destruction and the power of forgiveness, witnessed through the eyes of identical twin brothers.

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