Synopses & Reviews
At first savagely reviewed, The Way We Live Now
(1875) has since emerged as Trollope's masterpiece and the most admired of his works. When Trollope returned to England from the colonies in 1872 he was horrified by the immorality and dishonesty he found. In a fever of indignation he sat down to write The Way We Live Now
, his longest novel. Nothing escaped the satirist's whip: politics, finance, the aristocracy, the literary world, gambling, sex, and much else. In this world of bribes and vendettas, swindling and suicide, in which heiresses are won like gambling stakes, Trollope's characters embody all the vices: Lady Carbury, a 43-year-old coquette, 'false from head to foot'; her son Felix, with the 'instincts of a horse, not approaching the higher sympathies of a dog'; and Melmotte, the colossal figure who dominates the book, a 'horrid, big, rich scoundrel ... a bloated swindler ... a vile city ruffian'.
About the Series: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
"An intriguing, fun, and intelligent read."—Publishers Weekly
"Chair of Tears is challengingly innovative and comfortingly familiar, satirically biting and laugh-out-loud funny."—Debroah L. Madsen, Studies in American Indian Literatures
"In Chair of Tears Gerald Vizenor hands us a pitch-perfect send-up not only of Native American studies departments but of academia in general, the gaming industry and the publishing business."—Holly Carver, Wapsipinicon Almanac
"With prose that vivifies the intricate patchwork of characters and captures the landscape's simplicity, Haven's Wake explores 'the various attempts to explain the unexplainable,' including family, faith, and death."—Katharine Fronk, Booklist Online
"[Haven's Wake is] lyrically written and a wonderful read."—Ellen Meeropol, ellenmeeropol.com
"Randolph is an excellent writer, telling the story with a frankness and humor that keeps it from sinking into melodrama."—Publisher
“Havens Wake is about memory and silence, and about secrets and the fear of them. But above all, its a tale of love and loyalty. At the very heart of this deeply heartfelt novel is the story of the restorative power of family and tradition.”—Timothy Schaffert, author of The Coffins of Little Hope
“Ladette Randolph traces that finest of lines between what counts as betrayal and what counts as fidelity in a family, what counts as love and what counts as duty over the generations, what counts as desire and what counts as necessity in a home. Havens Wake is a moving reckoning of disappointments and glories.”—William Lychack, author of The Architect of Flowers
“A song of a story—uplifting, tender, heart-shattering. Ladette Randolph is a master. These characters are so real to me I feel I could drive to Nebraska and find them, easily.”—Debra Magpie Earling, author of Perma Red
The best stories create traditions, and this novel by celebrated Native American writer Gerald Vizenor is a marvelous conjunction of trickster stories and literary ingenuity. Chair of Tears
is funny, fierce, ironic, and deadly serious, a sendup of sacred poses, cultural pretensions, and familiar places from reservations to universities. The novel begins with generous stories about Captain Eighty, his young wife, the poker-playing genius named Quiver, and their children and grandchildren who live on a rustic houseboat.
Captain Shammer, an extraordinary grandson reared on the houseboat and with no formal education, is appointed the chairman of a troubled Department of Native American Indian Studies at a prominent university. Shammer is a natural enterpriser and ironic showman in the tradition of trickster stories. He arrives at the first faculty meeting dressed in the uniform of Gen. George Armstrong Custer. Native students celebrate his conversion of the department into an academic poker parlor and casino, and a panic radio station. The most sensational enterprise is the training of service mongrels to detect the absence of irony.
An irresistible novel of original ideas, Chair of Tears gets to the heart of questions about identity politics, multiculturalism, pedantry, and timely virtues.
Early July, and the corn in eastern Nebraska stands ten feet tall; after a near-decade of drought, it seems too good to be true, and everyone is watching the sky for trouble. For the Grebels, whose plots of organic crops trace a modest patchwork among the vast fields of soybeans and corn, trouble arrives from a different quarter in the form of Elsas voice on her estranged sons answering machine: “Your fathers dead. Youll probably want to come home.”
When a tractor accident fells the patriarch of this Mennonite family, the threads holding them together are suddenly drawn taut, singing with the tensions of a lifetimes worth of love and faith, betrayal and shame. Through the competing voices of those gathered for Haven Grebels funeral, acts of loyalty and failures, long-suppressed resentments and a tragic secret are brought to light, expressing a larger, complex truth.
About the Author
Ladette Randolph is the editor-in-chief of Ploughshares magazine and is Distinguished Publisher-in-Residence at Emerson College. She is the award-winning author of A Sandhills Ballad (Nebraska, 2011) and This Is Not the Tropics and is the editor of two anthologies, including A Different Plain: Contemporary Nebraska Fiction Writers, both available in Bison Books editions. She is the recipient of the Pushcart Prize, a Rona Jaffe Foundation grant, four Nebraska Book Awards, and the Virginia Faulkner Award.