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The Feast of Loveby Charles Baxter
Synopses & Reviews
From "one of our most gifted writers" (Chicago Tribune), here is a superb new novel that delicately unearths the myriad manifestations of extraordinary love between ordinary people.
The Feast of Love is just that — a sumptuous work of fiction about the thing that most distracts and delights us. In a re-imagined Midsummer Night's Dream, men and women speak of and desire their ideal mates; parents seek out their lost children; adult children try to come to terms with their own parents and, in some cases, find new ones.
In vignettes both comic and sexy, the owner of a coffee shop recalls the day his first wife seemed to achieve a moment of simple perfection, while she remembers the women's softball game during which she was stricken by the beauty of the shortstop. A young couple spends hours at the coffee shop fueling the idea of their fierce love. A professor of philosophy, stopping by for a cup of coffee, makes a valiant attempt to explain what he knows to be the inexplicable workings of the human heart Their voices resonate with each other — disparate people joined by the meanderings of love — and come together in a tapestry that depicts the most irresistible arena of life. Crafted with subtlety, grace, and power, The Feast of Love is a masterful novel.
“Rich, juicy...completely engrossing. [Baxter] builds a community right on the page before us, using a glittering eye, a silvery tongue — and just a little moonlight.” The New York Times Book Review
“Superb — a near-perfect book, as deep as it is broad in its humaneness, comedy and wisdom.” The Washington Post Book World
Late one night, a man wakes from a bad dream and decides to take a walk through his neighborhood. After catching sight of two lovers entangled on the football field, he comes upon Bradley Smith, friend and fellow insomniac, and Bradley begins to tell a series of tales — a luminous narrative of love in all its complexity.
We meet Kathryn, Bradley's first wife, who leaves him for another woman, and Diana, Bradley's second wife, more suitable as a mistress than a spouse. We meet Chloé and Oscar, who dream of a life together far different from the sadness they have known. We meet Esther and Harry, whose love for their lost son persists despite his contempt for them. And we follow Bradley on his nearly magical journey to conjugal happiness.
About the Author
Charles Baxter lives in Minneapolis and teaches at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of seven other works of fiction, including Believers, Harmony of the World, and Through the Safety Net. The Feast of Love was a finalist for the National Book Award.
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