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The Feast of Love

by

The Feast of Love Cover

 

Staff Pick

If you have ever loved, buy this book! How's that for a strong recommendation? Charles Baxter is, in my opinion, one of the most under-appreciated contemporary American authors on the scene. He is remarkably talented. This novel, set in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is comprised of a collection of first person narratives. We hear the voices of Bradley, Chloé, Harry, and Diana, with a few others sprinkled in. You know the saying, "everybody has a story to tell." Baxter tells their stories, stories of love and loss and longing, through exquisite observations that capture profound, visceral human emotion and everyday sentiment. He conveys it in prose that is at once authentic and poetic. Each of the characters approaches life and love differently, and by the end of the book, we care about them all. Baxter gently nudges our guard down and allows us to feel without feeling manipulated. Such is the compassion good writing can render.
Recommended by Rebecca, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

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.

Review:

"Extraordinary....The Feast of Love is as precise, as empathetic, as luminous as any of Baxter's past work. It is also rich, juicy, laugh-out-loud funny and completely engrossing....As loose and supple as life itself." The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"I had scarcely read twenty pages of Charles Baxter's superb new novel — a near perfect book, as deep as it is broad in its humaneness, comedy and wisdom — when I began to worry I couldn't do it justice in a review....If there is any justice, this new novel will win him the wider fame and readership he deserves." Washington Post Book World

Review:

"[A] buoyant, eloquent and touching narrative....Some magical things seem to happen...but the true magic in this luminous book is the seemingly effortless ebb and flow of the author's clear-sighted yet deeply poetic vision." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[E]xtremely likable....[T]he Joycean monologue (spoken by Chloé) and graceful acknowledgement of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, with which Baxter ends this rueful tale of romantic folly, are the perfect touches." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"The best book I've read this year...A beautiful, sly, bawdly and wondrous conversation on love, on mistaken pairings and the happiness when they are set aright." Detroit Free Press

Synopsis:

In vignettes both comic and sexy, men and women speak of and desire the ideal mates who may be hiding in the unmapped sphere of possibilities in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

About the Author

Charles Baxter is the author of the novels The Feast of Love (nominated for the National Book Award), The Soul Thief, Saul and Patsy, Shadow Play, and First Light, and the collections Believers, A Relative Stranger, Through the Safety Net, and Harmony of the World. He lives in Minneapolis and teaches at the University of Minnesota and in the M.F.A. Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

Dina, November 24, 2007 (view all comments by Dina)
This is a wonderful book. Baxter takes us through the lives and loves of multiple characters, gradually tying their stories together as he goes.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(15 of 31 readers found this comment helpful)
Deborah Fochler, September 30, 2007 (view all comments by Deborah Fochler)
I read this book several years ago and absolutely loved it. The stories are captivating and spellbinding and reinforces the belief we all need love. It is by far one of the best books of this decade - not year - but decade. This author is brilliant. Because the movie is coming out, I decided to reread the book - in my opinion the book is much better than the movie and I can not fathom how a director could do this book justice. Dont miss it.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(16 of 31 readers found this comment helpful)
Mick, August 15, 2007 (view all comments by Mick)
This novel is a sheer pleasure to read. Baxter tells stories of love, love lost, love found and does it all beautifully. It's all as accessible as life (and love) itself. I love this book.
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(19 of 35 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 6 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375709104
Author:
Baxter, Charles
Publisher:
Vintage Books USA
Location:
New York
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Love stories
Subject:
Community life
Subject:
Ann Arbor
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage Contemporaries
Series Volume:
3603
Publication Date:
20010531
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8.03x5.25x.74 in. .57 lbs.

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Related Subjects

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

The Feast of Love Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$3.50 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780375709104 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

If you have ever loved, buy this book! How's that for a strong recommendation? Charles Baxter is, in my opinion, one of the most under-appreciated contemporary American authors on the scene. He is remarkably talented. This novel, set in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is comprised of a collection of first person narratives. We hear the voices of Bradley, Chloé, Harry, and Diana, with a few others sprinkled in. You know the saying, "everybody has a story to tell." Baxter tells their stories, stories of love and loss and longing, through exquisite observations that capture profound, visceral human emotion and everyday sentiment. He conveys it in prose that is at once authentic and poetic. Each of the characters approaches life and love differently, and by the end of the book, we care about them all. Baxter gently nudges our guard down and allows us to feel without feeling manipulated. Such is the compassion good writing can render.

"Review" by , "Extraordinary....The Feast of Love is as precise, as empathetic, as luminous as any of Baxter's past work. It is also rich, juicy, laugh-out-loud funny and completely engrossing....As loose and supple as life itself."
"Review" by , "I had scarcely read twenty pages of Charles Baxter's superb new novel — a near perfect book, as deep as it is broad in its humaneness, comedy and wisdom — when I began to worry I couldn't do it justice in a review....If there is any justice, this new novel will win him the wider fame and readership he deserves."
"Review" by , "[A] buoyant, eloquent and touching narrative....Some magical things seem to happen...but the true magic in this luminous book is the seemingly effortless ebb and flow of the author's clear-sighted yet deeply poetic vision."
"Review" by , "[E]xtremely likable....[T]he Joycean monologue (spoken by Chloé) and graceful acknowledgement of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, with which Baxter ends this rueful tale of romantic folly, are the perfect touches."
"Review" by , "The best book I've read this year...A beautiful, sly, bawdly and wondrous conversation on love, on mistaken pairings and the happiness when they are set aright."
"Synopsis" by , In vignettes both comic and sexy, men and women speak of and desire the ideal mates who may be hiding in the unmapped sphere of possibilities in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
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