We are posting recommendations of books by our sponsor, Eight Cousins bookstore in Falmouth. Because of the coronavirus, Eight Cousins is available for online and phone orders. Call 508-548-5548 for details.
This week’s recommendation is “The Glass Hotel” by Emily St. John Mandel.
A New York Times “20 Books We’re Watching For in 2020”
An Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Bustle, Buzzfeed, GoodReads, Houston Chronicle, Writer’s Digest, Medium, Washington Independent Review of Books, The Millions, Boston Globe, USA Today, and Women’s Day Most Anticipated Book
From the award-winning author of Station Eleven, an exhilarating novel set at the glittering intersection of two seemingly disparate events-a massive Ponzi scheme collapse and the mysterious disappearance of a woman from a ship at sea.
Vincent is a bartender at the Hotel Caiette, a five-star lodging on the northernmost tip of Vancouver Island. On the night she meets Jonathan Alkaitis, a hooded figure scrawls a message on the lobby’s glass wall: “Why don’t you swallow broken glass.” High above Manhattan, a greater crime is committed: Alkaitis is running an international Ponzi scheme, moving imaginary sums of money through clients’ accounts. When the financial empire collapses, it obliterates countless fortunes and devastates lives. Vincent, who had been posing as Jonathan’s wife, walks away into the night. Years later, a victim of the fraud is hired to investigate a strange occurrence: a woman has seemingly vanished from the deck of a container ship between ports of call.
In this captivating story of crisis and survival, Emily St. John Mandel takes readers through often hidden landscapes: campgrounds for the near-homeless, underground electronica clubs, the business of international shipping, service in luxury hotels, and life in a federal prison. Rife with unexpected beauty, The Glass Hotel is a captivating portrait of greed and guilt, love and delusion, ghosts and unintended consequences, and the infinite ways we search for meaning in our lives.
About the Author
EMILY ST. JOHN MANDEL’s four previous novels include Station Eleven, which was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award and has been translated into thirty-two languages. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.
“The question of what is real—be it love, money, place or memory—has always been at the heart of Ms. Mandel’s fiction… her narratives snake their way across treacherous, shifting terrain. Certainties are blurred, truth becomes malleable and in The Glass Hotel the con man thrives… Lyrical, hypnotic images… suspend us in a kind of hallucinatory present where every detail is sharply defined yet queasily unreliable. A sense of unease thickens… Ms. Mandel invites us to observe her characters from a distance even as we enter their lives, a feat she achieves with remarkable skill. And if the result is a sense not only of detachment but also of desolation, then maybe that’s the point.”—Anna Mundow, Wall Street Journal
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