Excerpt from The Plot by Jean Korelitz, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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The Plot

by Jean Korelitz

The Plot by Jean Korelitz X
The Plot by Jean Korelitz
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  • Published:
    May 2021, 336 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Peggy Kurkowski
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About this Book

Print Excerpt


"Hi. Alice, right?"

"Alice Logan. Yeah. I just wanted to say how much I like your work."

Jake felt, and noted, the physical sensation that generally accompanied this sentence, which he still did hear from time to time. In this context "work" could only mean The Invention of Wonder, a quiet novel set in his own native Long Island and featuring a young man named Arthur. Arthur, whose fascination with the life and ideas of Isaac Newton provides a through line for the novel and a stay against chaos when his brother dies suddenly, was not, emphatically not, a stand-in for Jake's own younger self. (Jake had no siblings at all, and he'd had to do extensive research to create a character knowledgeable about the life and ideas of Isaac Newton!) The Invention of Wonder had indeed been read at the time of its publication, and, he supposed, was still read on occasion, by people who cared about fiction and where it might be heading. Never once had anyone used the phrase "I like your work" to refer to Reverberations (a collection of short stories which his first publisher had rejected, and which the Diadem Press of the State University of New York—a highly respected university press!—had recast as "a novel in linked short stories"), despite the fact that innumerable copies had been dutifully sent out for review (resulting in not a single one).

Excerpted from The Plot by Jean Korelitz. Copyright © 2021 by Jean Korelitz. Excerpted by permission of Celadon. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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