The Fictioning Horror Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | September 18, 2014

Lin Enger: IMG Knowing vs. Knowing



On a hot July evening years ago, my Toyota Tercel overheated on a flat stretch of highway north of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. A steam geyser shot up from... Continue »
  1. $17.47 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    The High Divide

    Lin Enger 9781616203757

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$7.50
Used Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
3 Burnside Literature- A to Z

Lark and Termite

by

Lark and Termite Cover

ISBN13: 9780375401954
ISBN10: 0375401954
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 3 left in stock at $7.50!

 

Awards

The Rooster 2010 Morning News Tournament of Books Nominee

Staff Pick

This is the story of 17-year-old Lark and her fierce devotion to her disabled brother, nicknamed Termite. It's also the story of their family: proud Aunt Nonie, who raises them; Robert, Termite's father, killed in the Korean War; and their wayward mother, Lola. Time is presented in a fluid, mingled fashion, as the past continues to have consequences in the present. Jayne Anne Phillips writes dazzling, tactile prose that engages all five senses, and here she presents a novel with true staying power, one that lingers in the mind well after the last page is turned.
Recommended by Patrick, Powell's Books at PDX

Review-A-Day

"Jayne Anne Phillips writes with all five senses, paying attention — as few writers do — to sight, sound, taste, touch and smell in nearly every sentence of her tightly constructed, extraordinary new novel, Lark and Termite. On page after page she evokes the sound of machine guns turning on their pivots, the smell of soap on a big sister's hands, light that goes purple with an oncoming storm, the sweetness of divinity frosting or the acridity of bloodied water, and the balm of a lover's touch. The result, her first book in nine years, is a powerful reading experience, at once poetic and electrifying." Heller McAlpin, Newsday (read the entire Newsday review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A rich, wonderfully alive novel from one of our most admired and best-loved writers, her first book in nine years. Lark and Termite is set during the 1950's in West Virginia and Korea. It is a story of the power of loss and love, the echoing ramifications of war, family secrets, dreams and ghosts, and the unseen, almost magical bonds that unite and sustain us.

At its center, two children: Lark, on the verge of adulthood, and her brother, Termite, a child unable to walk and talk but filled with radiance. Around them, their mother, Lola, a haunting but absent presence; their aunt Nonie, a matronly, vibrant woman in her fifties, who raises them; and Termite's father, Corporal Robert Leavitt, who finds himself caught up in the chaotic early months of the Korean War.

Told with deep feeling, the novel invites us to enter into the hearts and thoughts of the leading characters, even into Termite's intricate, shuttered consciousness. We are with Leavitt, trapped by friendly fire alongside the Korean children he tries to rescue. We see Lark's dreams for Termite and her own future, and how, with the aid of a childhood love and a spectral social worker, she makes them happen. We learn of Lola's love for her soldier husband and her children, and unravel the mystery of her relationship with Nonie. We discover the lasting connections between past and future on the night the town experiences an overwhelming flood, and we follow Lark and Termite as their lives are changed forever.

Review:

There are books you recommend to everybody, and then there are books you share cautiously, even protectively. Jayne Anne Phillips' "Lark and Termite" is that second kind, a mysterious, affecting novel you'll want to talk about only with others who have fallen under its spell. On the surface, nothing about the West Virginia family in "Lark and Termite" seems especially noteworthy, except perhaps the... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"What a beautiful, beautiful novel this is — so rich and intricate in its drama, so elegantly written, so tender, so convincing, so penetrating, so incredibly moving. I can declare without hesitation or qualification that Lark and Termite is by far the best new novel I've read in the last five years or so." Tim O'Brien

Review:

"This novel is cut like a diamond, with such sharp authenticity and bursts of light." Alice Munro

Review:

"Lark and Termite is extraordinary and it is luminous. This is not simply classic Jayne Anne Phillips. This is something far more extraordinary. It is an astounding feat of the imagination. It is the best novel I've read this year." Junot Díaz

Review:

"Jayne Anne Phillips's intricate, deeply felt new novel reverberates with echoes of Faulkner, Woolf, Kerouac, McCullers and Michael Herr's war reporting, and yet it fuses all these wildly disparate influences into something incandescent and utterly original." New York Times

Review:

"Moving between Leavitt's perilous situation — his unit has taken refuge with some South Koreans in a railroad tunnel after being pinned down by friendly fire — and his hardscrabble family in Winfield, West Virginia, where a life-changing natural disaster strikes, Phillips lovingly and dramatically captures intimate and historic parallels between these disparate places.

Review:

"In one startling passage, Lark says about Termite, as they sit in the yard of Nonie's house in the 'still and flat' day. 'He never looks at his fingers but I always think he hears or knows something through them.' It seems to me that Phillips has always written this way too — right through her amazing fingers into the astonished world." Elle Magazine

Synopsis:

Phillips's first novel in nine years is a rich, many-layered work. Set in the 1950s in West Virginia and Korea, it is a story of the power of loss and love, the echoing ramifications of war, family secrets, dreams and ghosts, and the unseen, almost magical bonds that unite and sustain families.

About the Author

Jayne Anne Phillips is the author of three previous novels and two collections of widely anthologized stories. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, a Bunting Fellowship, a Howard Foundation Fellowship. and an Academy Award in Literature (1997) from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Phillips is currently professor of English and director of the MFA Program at Rutgers-Newark, the State University of New Jersey.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

i8pixistix, September 16, 2009 (view all comments by i8pixistix)
Lyrical. The cadence and rhythm of the words - the way the story moves - is like a song with a good beat. Like the many references in the book to the sounds and flow of water and the sounds under the sounds - the book takes you along in its flow.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
alsek, February 7, 2009 (view all comments by alsek)
A wonderful novel by an accomplished writer. Set in West Virginia and Korea during the 1950's. Do yourself a favor and buy a first printing of this book which certainly is going to become a collectible. If you don't believe me simply read the blurbs on the back from a trio of heavyweights - Alice Munro, Junot Diaz and Tim O'Brien.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(6 of 11 readers found this comment helpful)
frugalscholar, February 2, 2009 (view all comments by frugalscholar)
A beautiful book about family, history, loss, love ...this reminds me of the earlier Machine Dreams, which also centers on a sibling relationship. A moving, powerful book.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(5 of 18 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 3 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780375401954
Author:
Phillips, Jayne Anne
Publisher:
Knopf
Author:
Jayne Anne Philli
Author:
ps
Subject:
General
Subject:
Korean war, 1950-1953
Subject:
West virginia
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Family saga
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20090106
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9.48x5.98x1.09 in. 1.02 lbs.

Other books you might like

  1. Cutting for Stone
    Used Hardcover $10.50
  2. The Little Giant of Aberdeen County
    Used Trade Paper $2.95
  3. My Abandonment
    Used Trade Paper $7.95
  4. The White Tiger
    Used Trade Paper $5.50
  5. Tallgrass
    Used Trade Paper $4.95
  6. The Anthologist
    Used Hardcover $5.50

Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Featured Titles

Lark and Termite Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.50 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Knopf Publishing Group - English 9780375401954 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

This is the story of 17-year-old Lark and her fierce devotion to her disabled brother, nicknamed Termite. It's also the story of their family: proud Aunt Nonie, who raises them; Robert, Termite's father, killed in the Korean War; and their wayward mother, Lola. Time is presented in a fluid, mingled fashion, as the past continues to have consequences in the present. Jayne Anne Phillips writes dazzling, tactile prose that engages all five senses, and here she presents a novel with true staying power, one that lingers in the mind well after the last page is turned.

"Review A Day" by , "Jayne Anne Phillips writes with all five senses, paying attention — as few writers do — to sight, sound, taste, touch and smell in nearly every sentence of her tightly constructed, extraordinary new novel, Lark and Termite. On page after page she evokes the sound of machine guns turning on their pivots, the smell of soap on a big sister's hands, light that goes purple with an oncoming storm, the sweetness of divinity frosting or the acridity of bloodied water, and the balm of a lover's touch. The result, her first book in nine years, is a powerful reading experience, at once poetic and electrifying." (read the entire Newsday review)
"Review" by , "What a beautiful, beautiful novel this is — so rich and intricate in its drama, so elegantly written, so tender, so convincing, so penetrating, so incredibly moving. I can declare without hesitation or qualification that Lark and Termite is by far the best new novel I've read in the last five years or so."
"Review" by , "This novel is cut like a diamond, with such sharp authenticity and bursts of light."
"Review" by , "Lark and Termite is extraordinary and it is luminous. This is not simply classic Jayne Anne Phillips. This is something far more extraordinary. It is an astounding feat of the imagination. It is the best novel I've read this year."
"Review" by , "Jayne Anne Phillips's intricate, deeply felt new novel reverberates with echoes of Faulkner, Woolf, Kerouac, McCullers and Michael Herr's war reporting, and yet it fuses all these wildly disparate influences into something incandescent and utterly original."
"Review" by , "Moving between Leavitt's perilous situation — his unit has taken refuge with some South Koreans in a railroad tunnel after being pinned down by friendly fire — and his hardscrabble family in Winfield, West Virginia, where a life-changing natural disaster strikes, Phillips lovingly and dramatically captures intimate and historic parallels between these disparate places.
"Review" by , "In one startling passage, Lark says about Termite, as they sit in the yard of Nonie's house in the 'still and flat' day. 'He never looks at his fingers but I always think he hears or knows something through them.' It seems to me that Phillips has always written this way too — right through her amazing fingers into the astonished world."
"Synopsis" by , Phillips's first novel in nine years is a rich, many-layered work. Set in the 1950s in West Virginia and Korea, it is a story of the power of loss and love, the echoing ramifications of war, family secrets, dreams and ghosts, and the unseen, almost magical bonds that unite and sustain families.
spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.