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Jonathan Lethem biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Read-Alikes

Jonathan Lethem

Jonathan Lethem

Jonathan Lethem Biography

Jonathan Lethem is the New York Times bestselling author of ten novels, including The Fortress of Solitude and Motherless Brooklyn, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award. He currently teaches creative writing at Pomona College in California.

Jonathan Lethem's website

This bio was last updated on 10/30/2018. In a perfect world, we would like to keep all of BookBrowse's biographies up to date, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's simply impossible to do. So, if the date of this bio is not recent, you may wish to do an internet search for a more current source, such as the author's website or social media presence. If you are the author or publisher and would like us to update this biography, send the complete text and we will replace the old with the new.

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Interview

Jonathan Lethem talks about his book, The Fortress of Solitude, Brooklyn and how much the book mirrors his own experiences.

You're going on an extensive reading tour for FORTRESS. What's it like talking about Brooklyn outside of New York?
As a regional writer, which is what I am lately, I'm incredibly lucky: my region is an archetype that the rest of the country, and indeed the world, cares about. Brooklyn's been etched into the cultural consciousness of most readers (and moviegoers), so I don't feel like I meet a lot of resistance in putting the material across elsewhere. And just about everyone I meet claims to have a distant uncle or cousin living in Brooklyn, not that they ever call or visit.

The book is packed with such rich detail: on the prison system, comic books, the music industry. How much research was necessary on these subjects?
I did a lot of research, more than I'd ever done for any other book by far. More than I'd ever done in school, in fact, I learned the pleasure of study for the first time these last five year, which is to say, quite late. Of course, much of what I was studying was my own life, the life of my city as I'd known it, the culture which surrounded me like an ocean surrounds a fish and about which I felt so much already, even if I understood very little. I had to go back...

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Books by this Author

Books by Jonathan Lethem at BookBrowse
The Feral Detective jacket A Gambler's Anatomy jacket Lucky Alan jacket Dissident Gardens jacket
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Read-Alikes

All the books below are recommended as read-alikes for Jonathan Lethem but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose read-alikes

  • Molly Antopol

    Molly Antopol

    Molly Antopol teaches writing at Stanford University, where she was a recent Wallace Stegner Fellow. A recipient of the National Book Foundation's 5 Under 35 award, she holds an MFA from Columbia University and lives in ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Dissident Gardens

    Try:
    The UnAmericans
    by Molly Antopol

  • Anne Applebaum

    Anne Applebaum

    Anne Applebaum was born in 1964, and was educated at Sidwell Friends School before earning a BA at Yale. Anne went on to earn a Masters Degree at the London School of Economics, before moving to Warsaw, Poland in 1988 as a ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Dissident Gardens

    Try:
    Iron Curtain
    by Anne Applebaum

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