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Evening (Vintage Contemporaries)by Susan Minot
Publishers Weekly Best Book of 1998.
A New York Times Notable Book for 1998.
Synopses & Reviews
With two novels and one short story collection published to overwhelming critical acclaim ("Monkeys takes your breath away," said Anne Tyler; "heartbreaking, exhilarating," raved the New York Times Book Review), Susan Minot has emerged as one of the most gifted writers in America, praised for her ability to strike at powerful emotional truths in language that is sensual and commanding, mesmerizing in its vitality and intelligence.
Now, with Evening, she gives us her most ambitious novel, a work of surpassing beauty. During a summer weekend on the coast of Maine, at the wedding of her best friend, Ann Grant fell in love. She was twenty-five. Forty years later after three marriages and five children Ann Lord finds herself in the dim claustrophobia of illness, careening between lucidity and delirium and only vaguely conscious of the friends and family parading by her bedside, when the memory of that weekend returns to her with the clarity and intensity of a fever-dream.
Evening unfolds in the rushlight of that memory, as Ann relives those three vivid days on the New England coast, with motorboats buzzing and bands playing in the night, and the devastating tragedy that followed a spectacular wedding. Here, in the surge of hope and possibility that coursed through her at twenty-five in a singular time of complete surrender Ann discovers the highest point of her life. Superbly written and miraculously uplifting, Evening is a stirring exploration of time and memory, of love's transcendence and of its failure to transcend a rich testament to the depths of grief and passion, and a stunning achievement.
"Minot is renowned for the exquisite precision of her language and her emotional insights, traits she has elevated to new and exhilarating heights in this supremely sensual, sensitive, dramatic, and artistic novel, her finest work to date....Minot's renderings of the heat of the past and the cooling of the present are gorgeously cinematic, so rich in color and motion, music and atmosphere that sorrow and death become no less glorious than joy and life." Booklist
"In her powerful third novel Susan Minot mesmerizes with her convincing evocation of Lord's final semiconscious state, wherein time and place crisscross, the lines between real and imagined blur, and the difference between resignation and regret is indistinguishable." Time
About the Author
Susan Minot was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and grew up in Manchester-by-the-Sea. She studied writing and painting at Brown University and received an MFA in writing from Columbia University. After publishing short stories in Grand Street and The New Yorker she was offered a contract for a novel by the legendary publisher Seymour Lawrence. His initial support for "a work of fiction" became Monkeys, nine stories which together make up a novel about the Vincent family. It was published in a dozen countries and won the Prix Femina Etranger in France in l987.
The novel was followed by Lust & Other Stories, a collection about wayward artists and journalists living in New York City, particularly about the relations between men and women in their twenties and thirties having difficulty coming together and difficulty breaking apart. In l994 she was contacted by the director Bernardo Bertolucci to write the screenplay for his film Stealing Beauty. Her other books are Folly and Evening. Minot lives in New York City.
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