The Blizzard Party: Book summary and reviews of The Blizzard Party by Jack Livings

The Blizzard Party

by Jack Livings

The Blizzard Party by Jack Livings X
The Blizzard Party by Jack Livings
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Book Summary

A panoramic novel set in New York City during the catastrophic blizzard of February 1978.

On the night of February 6, 1978, a catastrophic nor'easter struck the city of New York. On that night, in a penthouse in the Upper West Side's stately Apelles, a crowd gathered for a wild party. And on that night, Mr. Albert Haynes Caldwell―a partner emeritus at Swank, Brady & Plescher; Harvard class of '26; father of three; widower; atheist; and fiscal conservative―hatched a plan to fake a medical emergency and toss himself into the Hudson River, where he would drown.

In the eye of this storm: Hazel Saltwater, age six. The strange events of that night irrevocably altered many lives, but none more than hers. The Blizzard Party is Hazel's reconstruction of that night, an exploration of love, language, conspiracy, auditory time travel, and life after death.

Cinematic, with a vast cast of characters and a historical scope that spans World War II Poland, the lives of rich and powerful Manhattanites in the late 1970's, and the enduring effects of 9/11, Jack Livings's The Blizzard Party is an epic novel in the form of a final farewell.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"[B]rilliant...Livings calls to mind the work of Michael Chabon as he brings insight into the way events and circumstances shape his characters' lives. This is one to savor." - Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"[A] first novel that might be called a detour de force: sprawling, discursive, loose-limbed (and impressive...Livings may not quite have Wolfe's journalistic chops, but he's a far more skillful and empathetic novelist, and what seems moralistic and preening in Wolfe's books reads here mostly as playful and nimble...An exuberant, everything-and-the-kitchen-sink pleasure." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"[An] ambitious debut...[The Blizzard Party] features moments of brilliance, especially in the dialogue and the surprising connections. A literary feast." - Booklist

This information about The Blizzard Party shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Joseph Owens

Enveloping Masterpiece
This engaging work is most difficult to put aside. The Character Development is engrossing and the various facets of the central story are captivating.

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Author Information

Jack Livings

Jack Livings is author of The Dog, which was awarded the PEN / Robert W. Bingham Prize, the Rome Prize for Literature, and was included on best book of the year lists by the Times Literary Supplement and the New York Times. His short stories have appeared in Best American Short Stories and have been awarded two Pushcart Prizes. His first novel, The Blizzard Party, will be published in winter 2021. He lives in New York with his family.

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