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The Brothers K written by David James Duncan

 

The Brothers K written by David James Duncan

Overview:

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK
 
Once in a great while a writer comes along who can truly capture the drama and passion of the life of a family. David James Duncan, author of the novel The River Why and the collection River Teeth, is just such a writer. And in The Brothers K he tells a story both striking and in its originality and poignant in its universality.
 
This touching, uplifting novel spans decades of loyalty, anger, regret, and love in the lives of the Chance family. A father whose dreams of glory on a baseball field are shattered by a mill accident. A mother who clings obsessively to religion as a ward against the darkest hour of her past. Four brothers who come of age during the seismic upheavals of the sixties and who each choose their own way to deal with what the world has become. By turns uproariously funny and deeply moving, and beautifully written throughout, The Brothers K is one of the finest chronicles of our lives in many years.
 
Praise for The Brothers K
 
“The pages of The Brothers K sparkle.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
“Duncan is a wonderfully engaging writer.”—Los Angeles Times
 
“This ambitious book succeeds on almost every level and every page.”—USA Today
 
“Duncan’s prose is a blend of lyrical rhapsody, sassy hyperbole and all-American vernacular.”—San Francisco Chronicle
 
The Brothers K affords the . . . deep pleasures of novels that exhaustively create, and alter, complex worlds. . . . One always senses an enthusiastic and abundantly talented and versatile writer at work.”—The Washington Post Book World
 
“Duncan . . . tells the larger story of an entire popular culture struggling to redefine itself—something he does with the comic excitement and depth of feeling one expects from Tom Robbins.”—Chicago Tribune

Synopsis:

Finally in trade paperback, complementing  Bantam's new release of River Teeth  and our consistently bestselling edition of  The River Why, here is The  Brothers K, a lyrical and lovely novel of  family.

Publishers Weekly

Duncan took almost 10 years to follow up the publication of his much-praised first novel, The River Why, but this massive second effort is well worth the wait. It is a stunning work: a complex tapestry of family tensions, baseball, politics and religion, by turns hilariously funny and agonizingly sad. Highly inventive formally, the novel is mainly narrated by Kincaid Chance, the youngest son in a family of four boys and identical twin girls, the children of Hugh Chance, a discouraged minor-league ballplayer whose once-promising career was curtained by an industrial accident, and his wife Laura, an increasingly fanatical Seventh-Day Adventist. The plot traces the working-out of the family's fate from the beginning of the Eisenhower years through the traumas of Vietnam. One son becomes an atheist and draft resister; another immerses himself in Eastern religions, while the third, the most genuinely Christian of the children, ends up in Southeast Asia. In spite of the author's obvious affection for the sport, this is not a baseball novel; it is, as Kincaid says, ``the story of an eight-way tangle of human beings, only one-eighth of which was a pro ballpayer.'' The book portrays the extraordinary differences that can exist among siblings--much like the Dostoyevski novel to which The Brothers K alludes in more than just title--and how family members can redeem one another in the face of adversity. Long and incident-filled, the narrative appears rather ramshackle in structure until the final pages, when Duncan brings together all of the themes and plot elements in a series of moving climaxes. The book ends with a quiet grace note--a reprise of its first images--to satisfyingly close the narrative circle. Major ad/promo; author tour. (June)

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Title: The Brothers K

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