Thursday, July 31, 2008

Love in Times of Chaos and Crisis

What to you think of northern California? San Jose - Rose Garden District? San Francisco - Hunters Point? Russian River - Vineyards? Yes, of course, but in 1989, it was the Loma Prieta earthquake.

What about New York City? Subways? Apartments?

In this chaotic love story and stylish first novel, Maynard and Jennica by Rudolph Delson, set in 2001, New York City is Ground Zero and September 11th.

This is one of those books that you will just enjoy reading for the naive and poignant characters presented in snippets of first-person confession and confusion. The book pieces together the romance between Jennica (escaped from San Jose to NYC, via Princeton), and Maynard (starving artist scion of a old, rich family - 21st century variation on the classic Buddenbrooks: The Decline of a Family).

Some excerpts:

Jennica's brother:
She unpacks all the bags and then throws them in the same trash bin where her corn husks and citrus rinds go, because they don't do compost in New York City
A NYC attorney:
And instead of being only a few inches high, our bonsai trees are over twelve feet high ... a to-scale replica of a planting of seven trees that was given as part of a famous dowry in seventeenth-century Japan.
Jennica: To summarize:
During the 1990s, ... I was definitively ... out of a relationship 68.53 percent of the time ... Obviously I am doing something wrong ... At least I have data.
A wonderfully quirky love story for anyone who as been single in California (northern) or NYC or imagined the romantic possibilities of these two most American parts of America.

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