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1 Beaverton Literature- A to Z

The Year of Endless Sorrows: A Novel

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The Year of Endless Sorrows: A Novel Cover

 

Review-A-Day

"From The Year of Endless Sorrows, Rapp's new novel, I wouldn't have pegged him for a playwright or screenwriter....His prose is too rich — gleeful, even — with its own power and intelligence in nailing down the world. But there is something cinematic in the pacing...that, when combined with Rapp's humor and language skills, creates a delightful and disturbing portrait of the absurd years of post-college, pre-money life in a city." Jill Owens, Powells.com (read the entire Powells.com review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

New York City, the early 1990s: the recession is in full swing and young people are squatting in abandoned buildings in the East Village while the homeless riot in Tompkins Square Park. The Internet is not part of daily life; the term "dot-com" has yet to be coined; and people's financial bubbles are burst for an entirely different set of reasons. What can all this mean for a young Midwestern man flush with promise, toiling at a thankless, poverty-wage job in corporate America, and hard at work on his first novel about acute knee pain and the end of the world?

With The Year of Endless Sorrows, acclaimed playwright and finalist for the 2003 William Saroyan International Prize for Writing Adam Rapp brings readers a hilarious picaresque reminiscent of Nick Hornby, Douglas Copeland, and Rick Moody at their best — a chronicle of the joys of love, the horrors of sex, the burden of roommates, and the rude discovery that despite your best efforts, life may not unfold as you had once planned.

Review:

"It's the early '90s, and an unnamed Midwestern aspiring writer, recently graduated, moves into an East Village apartment with three roommates: his actor younger brother, Feick (promptly swept out of his life by artistic success); his best friend, Glenwood (a skinny, self-loathing Columbia Business School student); and Burton Loach, a vagrant type just as happy to watch the fan blades as TV. The narrator's superiors at Van Von Donnell Publishing (where he has a pittance-paying, bottom-rung job) are waspy, shallow, depraved, and smugly articulate. In short chapters, YA novelist (Under the Wolf, Under the Dog) and playwright (Red Light Winter) Rapp lets the office satire rip, particularly of the boss with a predilection for farting (who takes a shine to him as prospective son-in-law material) and the children's book illustrator who delivers personalized erotic portraits on napkins to co-workers. In between novel writing, calls home to his frenzied mother and attractions to Ivy League office girls (as well as the physically flawless but destructive boss's daughter), he falls for aspiring actress Basha, a Polish émigré he has seen twice on the subway platform before running into her a third fateful time. This sweet, stagy bildungsroman never departs familiar territory, but it has lots of winning set pieces." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Sara Gomez Morales, 53, moves from Madrid to an Andalusian resort town to buy a house on a beach and do nothing. Her new neighbors include Juan Olmedo, a 40-year-old orthopedic surgeon fleeing Madrid for his own reasons. Flashbacks, which abound from early on, reveal that Sara was born poor in Madrid, but was raised by her rich godmother. As a young woman, Sara falls in love with and becomes pregnant by the married Vicente Gonzalez de Sandoval, a wealthy socialist, but she loses the child, and refuses to marry him when he divorces his wife. Years later, he helps her defraud her godmother of millions. Meanwhile, Juan's flashbacks center on his obsessive love for his deceased sister-in-law, Charo, and his sibling rivalry with his deceased brother, Damian. In the present, there's Maribel, the poorly educated cleaning woman both Sara and Juan look down upon (even as she becomes Sara's friend and Juan's lover), as well as Juan's 10-year-old niece, Tamara, and profoundly retarded brother, Alfonso. Grandes (The Ages of Lul) sets it all up fascinatingly, but Sara's past seems disconnected from who she is today, and sloppy writing (or translation) obscures the rest." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"It's the early '90s, and an unnamed Midwestern aspiring writer, recently graduated, moves into an East Village apartment with three roommates: his actor younger brother, Feick (promptly swept out of his life by artistic success); his best friend, Glenwood (a skinny, self-loathing Columbia Business School student); and Burton Loach, a vagrant type just as happy to watch the fan blades as TV. The narrator's superiors at Van Von Donnell Publishing (where he has a pittance-paying, bottom-rung job) are waspy, shallow, depraved, and smugly articulate. In short chapters, YA novelist (Under the Wolf, Under the Dog) and playwright (Red Light Winter) Rapp lets the office satire rip, particularly of the boss with a predilection for farting (who takes a shine to him as prospective son-in-law material) and the children's book illustrator who delivers personalized erotic portraits on napkins to co-workers. In between novel writing, calls home to his frenzied mother and attractions to Ivy League office girls (as well as the physically flawless but destructive boss's daughter), he falls for aspiring actress Basha, a Polish migr he has seen twice on the subway platform before running into her a third fateful time. This sweet, stagy bildungsroman never departs familiar territory, but it has lots of winning set pieces." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"This new novel is a testament to Rapp's ability to write in any genre with the same lucid talent....[W]hen this book is emotional, it is heartbreakingly true." Library Journal

Review:

"Rapp runs the risk of exhausting the reader with imaginatively embellished details, but it's not necessarily a bad kind of exhaustion: The accumulation of offbeat observations occasionally produces a certain existential hilarity. A familiar story originally rendered." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"If all this sounds somewhat pedestrian, that's because it is, but Rapp's inspired prose and comic set pieces add so much flavor to this entree that readers will be left hungry for more." Booklist

Review:

"Adam Rapp's The Year Of Endless Sorrows is an ultra vivid excruciatingly precise buildingsroman — a time capsule of a young man's evolution — a young man not entirely unlike Rapp himself. It is a story of roommates, and family and desire and the quest for meaning and definition while all the time bumping up against the ennui that is perhaps just the sensation of being alive and the daily absurd irony that is city life." A.M. Homes, author of This Book Will Save Your Life

Review:

"I love Adam's writing. His ironic bohemianism totally captures the scruff and tang of the great unwashed struggling literati. If Joyce Carol Oates and Charles Bukowski had a kid, he would be Adam Rapp." Eric Bogosian, author of Talk Radio

Review:

"Rapp...is a gifted storyteller. He makes demands on his audience, and he rewards its close attention with depth and elegance." John Lahr, The New Yorker

Synopsis:

New York City, the early 1990s: the recession is in full swing and young people are squatting in abandoned buildings in the East Village while the homeless riot in Tompkins Square Park. The Internet is not part of daily life; the term "dot-com" has yet to be coined; and people's financial bubbles are burst for an entirely different set of reasons. What can all this mean for a young Midwestern man flush with promise, toiling at a thankless, poverty-wage job in corporate America, and hard at work on his first novel about acute knee pain and the end of the world?

With The Year of Endless Sorrows, acclaimed playwright and finalist for the 2003 William Saroyan International Prize for Writing Adam Rapp brings readers a hilarious picaresque reminiscent of Nick Hornby, Douglas Copeland, and Rick Moody at their best--a chronicle of the joys of love, the horrors of sex, the burden of roommates, and the rude discovery that despite your best efforts, life may not unfold as you had once planned.

About the Author

Adam Rapp is the author of numerous plays, most notably Nocturne (Faber, 2002), and Red Light Winter (Faber, 2006), which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, as well as six novels for young adults. He lives in New York.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374293437
Author:
Rapp, Adam
Publisher:
Farrar Straus Giroux
Subject:
General
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Authorship
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Fiction -- Authorship.
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literary
Copyright:
Publication Date:
December 2006
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
416
Dimensions:
7.31 x 5.03 x 1.165 in

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Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Year of Endless Sorrows: A Novel Used Trade Paper
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Product details 416 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374293437 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "It's the early '90s, and an unnamed Midwestern aspiring writer, recently graduated, moves into an East Village apartment with three roommates: his actor younger brother, Feick (promptly swept out of his life by artistic success); his best friend, Glenwood (a skinny, self-loathing Columbia Business School student); and Burton Loach, a vagrant type just as happy to watch the fan blades as TV. The narrator's superiors at Van Von Donnell Publishing (where he has a pittance-paying, bottom-rung job) are waspy, shallow, depraved, and smugly articulate. In short chapters, YA novelist (Under the Wolf, Under the Dog) and playwright (Red Light Winter) Rapp lets the office satire rip, particularly of the boss with a predilection for farting (who takes a shine to him as prospective son-in-law material) and the children's book illustrator who delivers personalized erotic portraits on napkins to co-workers. In between novel writing, calls home to his frenzied mother and attractions to Ivy League office girls (as well as the physically flawless but destructive boss's daughter), he falls for aspiring actress Basha, a Polish émigré he has seen twice on the subway platform before running into her a third fateful time. This sweet, stagy bildungsroman never departs familiar territory, but it has lots of winning set pieces." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Sara Gomez Morales, 53, moves from Madrid to an Andalusian resort town to buy a house on a beach and do nothing. Her new neighbors include Juan Olmedo, a 40-year-old orthopedic surgeon fleeing Madrid for his own reasons. Flashbacks, which abound from early on, reveal that Sara was born poor in Madrid, but was raised by her rich godmother. As a young woman, Sara falls in love with and becomes pregnant by the married Vicente Gonzalez de Sandoval, a wealthy socialist, but she loses the child, and refuses to marry him when he divorces his wife. Years later, he helps her defraud her godmother of millions. Meanwhile, Juan's flashbacks center on his obsessive love for his deceased sister-in-law, Charo, and his sibling rivalry with his deceased brother, Damian. In the present, there's Maribel, the poorly educated cleaning woman both Sara and Juan look down upon (even as she becomes Sara's friend and Juan's lover), as well as Juan's 10-year-old niece, Tamara, and profoundly retarded brother, Alfonso. Grandes (The Ages of Lul) sets it all up fascinatingly, but Sara's past seems disconnected from who she is today, and sloppy writing (or translation) obscures the rest." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "It's the early '90s, and an unnamed Midwestern aspiring writer, recently graduated, moves into an East Village apartment with three roommates: his actor younger brother, Feick (promptly swept out of his life by artistic success); his best friend, Glenwood (a skinny, self-loathing Columbia Business School student); and Burton Loach, a vagrant type just as happy to watch the fan blades as TV. The narrator's superiors at Van Von Donnell Publishing (where he has a pittance-paying, bottom-rung job) are waspy, shallow, depraved, and smugly articulate. In short chapters, YA novelist (Under the Wolf, Under the Dog) and playwright (Red Light Winter) Rapp lets the office satire rip, particularly of the boss with a predilection for farting (who takes a shine to him as prospective son-in-law material) and the children's book illustrator who delivers personalized erotic portraits on napkins to co-workers. In between novel writing, calls home to his frenzied mother and attractions to Ivy League office girls (as well as the physically flawless but destructive boss's daughter), he falls for aspiring actress Basha, a Polish migr he has seen twice on the subway platform before running into her a third fateful time. This sweet, stagy bildungsroman never departs familiar territory, but it has lots of winning set pieces." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review A Day" by , "From The Year of Endless Sorrows, Rapp's new novel, I wouldn't have pegged him for a playwright or screenwriter....His prose is too rich — gleeful, even — with its own power and intelligence in nailing down the world. But there is something cinematic in the pacing...that, when combined with Rapp's humor and language skills, creates a delightful and disturbing portrait of the absurd years of post-college, pre-money life in a city." (read the entire Powells.com review)
"Review" by , "This new novel is a testament to Rapp's ability to write in any genre with the same lucid talent....[W]hen this book is emotional, it is heartbreakingly true."
"Review" by , "Rapp runs the risk of exhausting the reader with imaginatively embellished details, but it's not necessarily a bad kind of exhaustion: The accumulation of offbeat observations occasionally produces a certain existential hilarity. A familiar story originally rendered."
"Review" by , "If all this sounds somewhat pedestrian, that's because it is, but Rapp's inspired prose and comic set pieces add so much flavor to this entree that readers will be left hungry for more."
"Review" by , "Adam Rapp's The Year Of Endless Sorrows is an ultra vivid excruciatingly precise buildingsroman — a time capsule of a young man's evolution — a young man not entirely unlike Rapp himself. It is a story of roommates, and family and desire and the quest for meaning and definition while all the time bumping up against the ennui that is perhaps just the sensation of being alive and the daily absurd irony that is city life."
"Review" by , "I love Adam's writing. His ironic bohemianism totally captures the scruff and tang of the great unwashed struggling literati. If Joyce Carol Oates and Charles Bukowski had a kid, he would be Adam Rapp."
"Review" by , "Rapp...is a gifted storyteller. He makes demands on his audience, and he rewards its close attention with depth and elegance."
"Synopsis" by ,
New York City, the early 1990s: the recession is in full swing and young people are squatting in abandoned buildings in the East Village while the homeless riot in Tompkins Square Park. The Internet is not part of daily life; the term "dot-com" has yet to be coined; and people's financial bubbles are burst for an entirely different set of reasons. What can all this mean for a young Midwestern man flush with promise, toiling at a thankless, poverty-wage job in corporate America, and hard at work on his first novel about acute knee pain and the end of the world?

With The Year of Endless Sorrows, acclaimed playwright and finalist for the 2003 William Saroyan International Prize for Writing Adam Rapp brings readers a hilarious picaresque reminiscent of Nick Hornby, Douglas Copeland, and Rick Moody at their best--a chronicle of the joys of love, the horrors of sex, the burden of roommates, and the rude discovery that despite your best efforts, life may not unfold as you had once planned.

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