Stewart O'Nan's thirteenth novel is another wildly original, bittersweet gem like his celebrated Last Night at the Lobster. Valentine's weekend, Art and Marion Fowler flee their Cleveland suburb for Niagara Falls, desperate to recoup their losses. Jobless, with their home approaching foreclosure, and their marriage on the brink of collapse, Art and Marion liquidate their savings account and book a bridal suite at the Falls' ritziest casino for a second honeymoon. While they sightsee like tourists during the day, at night they risk it all at the roulette wheel to fix their finances - and save their marriage. A tender yet honest exploration of faith, forgiveness and last chances, The Odds is a reminder that love, like life, is always a gamble.
"The plot eventually devolves toward cliché... an otherwise tender tale of imperfection and commitment." - Publishers Weekly
"Readers of contemporary literary fiction should enjoy the subtle dry humor and a story that gains momentum and pitches toward a satisfying, if somewhat ambiguous happy ending." - Library Journal
"Starred Review. How O'Nan saves his story from debilitating darkness or cringing sentimentality presents an impressive reading experience." - Booklist
"An emotional richness permeates this short novel about a couple on the verge of ending their marriage while pondering whether they can salvage it." - Kirkus Reviews
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Rated of 5
The Odds by Stewart O'Nan
O'Nan has a singular knack of making the commonplace and mundane of vast interest and importance. Loved the odds statistics he gave at the start of each chapter. The hidden meanings he derives from everyday events, especially those that occur within a long marriage where each character has his or her own secrets, longings and expectations. Another very good read from this author.
Stewart O'Nan's award-winning fiction includes Snow Angels, The Speed Queen, A Prayer for the Dying, and Last Night at the Lobster. Granta named him one of Americas Best Young Novelists. He lives in Pittsburgh.
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