Synopses & Reviews
"Forty years ago I first linked up with Unguentine and we made love on twin-hulled catamarans, sails a-billow, bless the seas . . ."
So begins the courtship of a certain Unguentine to the woman we know only as "Mrs. Unguentine," the chronicler of their sad, fantastical tale. For forty years, they sail the seas together, alone on a giant land-covered barge of their own devising. They tend their gardens, raise a child, invent an artificial forest--all the while steering clear of civilization.
Log of the S.S. The Mrs. Unguentine is a masterpiece of modern domestic life, a comic novel of closeness and difficulty, miscommunication and stubborn resolve. Rarely has a book so perfectly registered the secret solitude of marriage, how shared loneliness can result in a powerful bond.
"Like that second the in its title, Log of the S.S. The Mrs. Unguentine is a stubborn creation that demands attention, and that odd surname is right on the money: This formally seamless book stings and soothes, like the most potent ointment, applied to literature too content to play it far too safe." Bookforum
"While Crawford's novel brings to mind the great literature of the sea (Moby-Dick, Mutiny on the Bounty, "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"), he doesn't allude to it; he doesn't have to. Log of the S.S. the Mrs. Unguentine--the book's most inelegant passage is its title--is a brave and audacious novel whose style, structure, story and language come together like strands of hemp spliced into an intricate knot." Chicago Tribune
"No one captures the mind of a control freak like Stanley Crawford." The Village Voice
"A captivating short work almost beyond description."--The New Yorker
About the Author
Stanley Crawford was born in 1937 and was educated at the University of Chicago and at the Sorbonne. He is the author of three novels: Log of the S.S. The Mrs. Unguentine, Travel Notes, Gascoyne, and Some Instructions, a classic satire on all the sanctimonious marriage manuals ever produced. He is also the author of two memoirs: A Garlic Testament: Seasons on a Small Farm in New Mexico and Mayordomo: Chronicle of an Acequia in Northern New Mexico. He has written numerous articles in various publications such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Double Take and Country Living. Crawford is co-proprietor with his wife, Rose Mary Crawford, of El Bosque Farm in Dixon, New Mexico.