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A Sense of Direction: Pilgrimage for the Restless and the Hopeful

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A Sense of Direction: Pilgrimage for the Restless and the Hopeful Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In medieval times, a pilgrimage gave the average Joe his only break from the daily grind. For Gideon Lewis-Kraus, it promises a different kind of escape. Determined to avoid the fear and self-sacrifice that kept his father, a gay rabbi, closeted until midlife, he has moved to anything-goes Berlin. But the surfeit of freedom there has begun to paralyze him, and when a friend extends a drunken invitation to join him on an ancient pilgrimage route across Spain, Lewis-Kraus packs his bag, grateful for the chance to wake each morning with a sense of direction.

Irreverent, moving, hilarious, and thought-provoking, A Sense of Direction is Lewis-Kraus’s dazzling riff on the perpetual war between discipline and desire, and its attendant casualties. Across three pilgrimages and many hundreds of miles, he completes an idiosyncratic odyssey to the heart of a family mystery and a human dilemma: How do we come to terms with what has been and what is — and find a way forward, with purpose?

Review:

“Beautiful, often very funny…Lewis-Kraus weaves a story that is both searching and purposeful, one that forces the reader, like the pilgrim, to value the journey as much as the destination.” The New Yorker

Review:

“Gideon Lewis-Kraus has written a very honest, very smart, very moving book about being young and rootless and even wayward. With great compassion and zeal he gets at the question: why search the world to solve the riddle of your own heart?" Dave Eggers

Review:

“Here is one of the best and most brilliant young writers in America.” GQ

Review:

"Charming and disarming…a wonderful exploration of the stories we tell ourselves." T: The New York Times Style Magazine

Review:

“A witty, deeply felt memoir…an honest, incisive grappling with the brute fact…that we only have one life to live…sparkles with tight, nearly aphoristic observations." The Boston Globe

Review:

“Nail[s] our collective anxiety — every sentence rings true….Lewis-Kraus is a master.” Daily Beast

Review:

“Rightfully anticipated literary debut.” Nylon

Review:

“A complicated meditation on what the physical act of pilgrimage can mean in modern society…[with] moments of brilliant philosophical insight.” The Onion AV Club

Review:

“Lewis-Kraus does nothing if not dazzle on the sentence level. But his commentary isn't just pretty; it's deeply self-aware.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer

Review:

“Gorgeously written… [Lewis-Kraus is] aimless, sure, but meticulously, obsessively, beautifully so.” The Rumpus

Review:

“A young writer seeks a cure for his fecklessness by following roads very much taken in this scintillating travel memoir….Lewis-Kraus’s vivid descriptive powers and funny, shaggy-dog philosophizing [yield] an entertaining, thoughtful portrait of a slacker caught up in life’s quest for something.” Publishers Weekly

Review:

“Physically, Lewis-Kraus’ feats are staggering, but more so is how fully and fluidly he recounts them, alongside meditation on his own youthful anxieties and a well-synthesized history of the act of pilgrimage.” Booklist

Review:

“If David Foster Wallace had written Eat, Pray, Love, it might have come close to approximating the adventures of Gideon Lewis-Kraus. A Sense of Direction is the digressively brilliant and seriously hilarious account of a fellow neurotic's wanderings, and his hard-won lessons in happiness, forgiveness, and international pilgrim fashion.” Gary Shteyngart

Review:

“This is a brilliant meditation on what the spiritual and fraternal and paternal and communal might mean to a person right now, fueled as it is by the funny, thorny, dreamy, generous, cranky, rigorous, truth-seeking voice of Gideon Lewis-Kraus. For the sake of whatever force or idea or feeling sustains you, make a pilgrimage to your nearest bookstore and buy the goddamn book.” Sam Lipsyte

About the Author

Gideon Lewis-Kraus has written for Harper's, The Believer, The New York Times Book Review, the Los Angeles Times Book Review, Wired, McSweeney's, Bookforum, GQ, Slate, and other publications. For the moment he lives in Brooklyn.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781594631498
Subtitle:
Pilgrimage for the Restless and the Hopeful
Author:
Lewis-Kraus, Gideon
Publisher:
Riverhead Trade
Subject:
Travel Writing-General
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
20130507
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
9.32 x 6.32 x 1.2 in 1.19 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Featured Titles » Biography
Travel » Special Interest » Religious
Travel » Travel Writing » General

A Sense of Direction: Pilgrimage for the Restless and the Hopeful Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$16.00 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Riverhead Trade - English 9781594631498 Reviews:
"Review" by , “Beautiful, often very funny…Lewis-Kraus weaves a story that is both searching and purposeful, one that forces the reader, like the pilgrim, to value the journey as much as the destination.”
"Review" by , “Gideon Lewis-Kraus has written a very honest, very smart, very moving book about being young and rootless and even wayward. With great compassion and zeal he gets at the question: why search the world to solve the riddle of your own heart?"
"Review" by , “Here is one of the best and most brilliant young writers in America.”
"Review" by , "Charming and disarming…a wonderful exploration of the stories we tell ourselves."
"Review" by , “A witty, deeply felt memoir…an honest, incisive grappling with the brute fact…that we only have one life to live…sparkles with tight, nearly aphoristic observations."
"Review" by , “Nail[s] our collective anxiety — every sentence rings true….Lewis-Kraus is a master.”
"Review" by , “Rightfully anticipated literary debut.”
"Review" by , “A complicated meditation on what the physical act of pilgrimage can mean in modern society…[with] moments of brilliant philosophical insight.”
"Review" by , “Lewis-Kraus does nothing if not dazzle on the sentence level. But his commentary isn't just pretty; it's deeply self-aware.”
"Review" by , “Gorgeously written… [Lewis-Kraus is] aimless, sure, but meticulously, obsessively, beautifully so.”
"Review" by , “A young writer seeks a cure for his fecklessness by following roads very much taken in this scintillating travel memoir….Lewis-Kraus’s vivid descriptive powers and funny, shaggy-dog philosophizing [yield] an entertaining, thoughtful portrait of a slacker caught up in life’s quest for something.”
"Review" by , “Physically, Lewis-Kraus’ feats are staggering, but more so is how fully and fluidly he recounts them, alongside meditation on his own youthful anxieties and a well-synthesized history of the act of pilgrimage.”
"Review" by , “If David Foster Wallace had written Eat, Pray, Love, it might have come close to approximating the adventures of Gideon Lewis-Kraus. A Sense of Direction is the digressively brilliant and seriously hilarious account of a fellow neurotic's wanderings, and his hard-won lessons in happiness, forgiveness, and international pilgrim fashion.”
"Review" by , “This is a brilliant meditation on what the spiritual and fraternal and paternal and communal might mean to a person right now, fueled as it is by the funny, thorny, dreamy, generous, cranky, rigorous, truth-seeking voice of Gideon Lewis-Kraus. For the sake of whatever force or idea or feeling sustains you, make a pilgrimage to your nearest bookstore and buy the goddamn book.”
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