Bound: Book summary and reviews of Bound by Antonya Nelson

Bound

A Novel

by Antonya Nelson

Bound by Antonya Nelson X
Bound by Antonya Nelson
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  • Published Sep 2010
    240 pages
    Genre: Literary Fiction

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Book Summary

Antonya Nelson is known for her razor-sharp depictions of contemporary family life in all of its sometimes sad, sometimes hilarious complexity. Her latest novel has roots in her own youth in Wichita, in the neighborhood stalked by the serial killer known as BTK (Bind, Torture, and Kill). A story of wayward love and lost memory, of public and private lives twisting out of control, Bound is Nelson's most accomplished and emotionally riveting work.

Catherine and Oliver, young wife and older entrepreneurial husband, are negotiating their difference in age and a plethora of well-concealed secrets. Oliver, now in his sixties, is a serial adulterer and has just fallen giddily in love yet again. Catherine, seemingly placid and content, has ghosts of a past she scarcely remembers. When Catherine's long-forgotten high school friend dies and leaves Catherine the guardian of her teenage daughter, that past comes rushing back. As Oliver manages his new love, and Catherine her new charge and darker past, local news reports turn up the volume on a serial killer who has reappeared after years of quiet.

In a time of hauntings and new revelations, Nelson's characters grapple with their public and private obligations, continually choosing between the suppression or indulgence of wild desires. Which way they turn, and what balance they find, may only be determined by those who love them most.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Plays on the idea of 'binding' can grow precious at times, but Nelson effectively explores issues of obligation, responsibility, and the possibility of creating new patterns and freeing ourselves from the past." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. A small gem—more understated than Nelson's recent stories, but equally sharp and deeply moving." - Kirkus

"Starred Review. A short story writer of exhilarating wit and empathy, Nelson returns to the novel after a decade with heightened authority. Tightly coiled, edgy, and funny... [a] sleekly powerful turbine of a novel." - Booklist

"Nelson’s prose looks to be as sleekly tough-minded as ever … essential for those serious about contemporary literature." - Library Journal

This information about Bound was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. 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 they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream 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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Author Information

Antonya Nelson

Antonya Nelson is the author of eight books of fiction, including Female Trouble and the novels Talking in Bed, Nobody's Girl, and Living to Tell. Nelson's work has appeared in the New Yorker, Esquire, Harper's, Redbook, and many other magazines, as well as in anthologies such as Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards and The Best American Short Stories. She is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, an NEA Grant, and, recently, the Rea Award for Short Fiction. She is married to writer Robert Boswell and lives in New Mexico, Colorado, and Texas, where she holds the Cullen Chair in Creative Writing at the University of Houston.

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