The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri Summary and Reviews

The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri

A Novel

by David Bajo

The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri by David Bajo X
The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri by David Bajo
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  • Published in USA  Jun 2008
    304 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

For most of his adult life - through two marriages and countless travels - the mathematician Philip Mazyrk has carried on a love affair with Irma Arcuri. Now Irma has vanished and left Philip her entire library of 351 books, five of them written by Irma herself. Buried in the text of this library - Cervantes to Turgenyev, Borges to Fowles - lay the secrets of Irma's disappearance and, in the novels Irma has written, the story of her elusive and romantic past with Philip.

Philip, a math genius who sees equations in every facet of life, reads the novels and begins to sense a more profound and troubling design at work. A mysterious woman appears; his ex-wife reveals a terrible secret; his stepdaughter, Nicole, long troubled by the free-spirited nature of her parents' lives, approaches a dangerous turn; and Nicole's teenage brother has fled. As clues, warnings, and implications both inside and outside the library mount, Philip begins to realize that he too is trapped in a narrative. Who is Irma Arcuri? What is really buried in the library? And, most important, whose story is this?

Like the work of Milan Kundera or John Fowles, Bajo's novel is brazenly passionate, sexy, even transgressive, yet thrillingly mysterious. Addictive, compelling, and clever, The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri will captivate fans of The Time Traveler's Wife and The Shadow of the Wind.

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Media Reviews

"Though Bajo's plotting can be elliptical and the denouement doesn't quite sing, the narrative's intelligence and passion transcend its metafictional ambiguities." - Publishers Weekly.

"Ambitious and intelligent but overstuffed." - Kirkus Reviews.

"The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri is a dazzling combination of love and sex and, yes, mathematics, and David Bajo uses mirrors to make his magic. If you have ever opened a novel and found yourself 'inside' the story, you must read this book." - Keith Donohue, author of the The Stolen Child.

The information about The 351 Books of Irma Arcuri shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. 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 of this book 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.

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David Bajo holds an MA in English literature from the University of Michigan and an MFA in fiction from UC Irvine. Bajo has taught writing at UC Irvine Boise State and currently teaches at the University of South Carolina. This is his first novel.

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