The Hundred-Year House: A Novel

By Rebecca Makkai

The acclaimed writer of The Borrower returns with a dazzlingly unique, mordantly witty novel concerning the secrets and techniques of an old-money family members and their turn-of-the-century property, Laurelfield.

“Rebecca Makkai is a author to monitor, as sneakily formidable as she is unpretentious."
Richard Russo
 
Meet the Devohrs: Zee, a Marxist literary student who detests her mom and dad’ wealth yet however reveals herself residing of their carriage condo; Gracie, her mom, who claims she will inform your lot in existence by means of your tooth; and Bruce, her step-father, stockpiling provides for the Y2K apocalypse and endlessly past due for his tee time. Then there’s Violet Devohr, Zee’s great-grandmother, who they are saying took her personal existence someplace within the tremendous condominium, and whose gigantic oil portrait nonetheless hangs within the eating room.

Violet’s portrait was once recognized to terrify the artists who resided on the condominium from the Nineteen Twenties to the Nineteen Fifties, while it served because the Laurelfield Arts Colony—and this is often precisely the interval Zee’s husband, Doug, is attracted to. An out-of-work educational whose merely desire of a destiny place is securing a publication deal, Doug is stalled on his biography of the poet Edwin Parfitt, as soon as in place of dwelling on the colony. All he must get the e-book again on track—besides a few motivation and self-esteem—is entry to the colony documents, rotting away within the attic for many years. but if Doug starts to poke round the place he shouldn’t, he reveals Gracie guards the records with a wierd ferocity, elevating questions on what she may be hiding. The secrets and techniques of the hundred-year condominium may flip every thing Doug and Zee imagine they find out about her family members on its head—that is, in the event that they have been to ever discover them.

In this brilliantly conceived, formidable, and deeply lucrative novel, Rebecca Makkai unfolds a generational saga in opposite, top the reader again in time on a literary scavenger hunt as we search to discover the reality approximately those unusual humans and this mysterious condominium. With intelligence and humor, a bold narrative strategy, and a lovingly satirical voice, Rebecca Makkai has crafted an unforgettable novel approximately relatives, destiny and the really good surprises lifestyles can offer.

For readers of Dodie Smith's I trap the Castle

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Leland laughed and shook his head. “No, no, this can be sounding like a sitcom. ” “Listen: Any Moore files, any correspondence, you could have it. you could submit it, promote it, it’s yours. ” “Huh. Christ. ” “I simply wish the Parfitt stuff. ” What he requested Leland to do used to be name Gracie pretending to be with the Adler Ross beginning. Adler Ross used to be the architect of where, simply recognized sufficient for somebody to care approximately his attics. Leland used to be going to be unhappy and candy and declare this used to be the final attic he had to photo to accomplish the documents. He’d take photographs of the home windows, throw round a few jargon, get out of there. “It’s reconnaissance,” Doug stated. “You simply see if there are dossier cupboards. And if everything’s going good, perhaps ask when you can circulation one to get a greater photo, then you definately say, ‘God, those are heavy, what’s in those things,’ correct? And in the meantime you’re gazing what key she makes use of at the attic door, the place she places it while she’s performed. ” “This is insane, Doug. I’m no longer a great liar. ” “Marianne Moore. Marianne Moore’s undiscovered poem approximately her mystery affair with Mickey Mantle. ” “Well, yeah. ok. real. ” 21 Zee had waited patiently in the course of the complete summer season consultation, via one sweltering reception at the president’s garden, and the 1st weeks of sophistication. She ultimately permit herself visit the technology construction machine lab to sort up the letter. She sat together with her again to the home windows and typed in eight-point font, then blew it up just for proofreading. pricey Dean Shaumber and Prof. Blum, I write on behalf of myself and different girl scholars who think disturbed via the photographs on Dr. Cole’s desktop. we're yes you're acquainted with the pictures, as they're universal wisdom. even supposing he closes that dossier after we input the place of work, it truly is unnerving to understand he has been taking a look at the images, and that he's in a mind set to degrade ladies. We easily want him to think about the influence this habit has on these ladies who stopover at his place of work. we're additionally disillusioned approximately his continuous use of the observe “coed,” yet this is often previous information and we comprehend not anything goes to be performed approximately it, and moreover we and the opposite scholars we have now spoken to are way more disturbed in regards to the pornography. Respectfully submitted by means of 3 ladies who desire to stay nameless. Zee went from side to side at the spelling of impression, yet figured the 3 imaginary ladies will be imaginary English majors, and could get it correct. She left copies within the printer trays the place they can be stumbled on by means of scholars, then caught one reproduction in Shaumber’s mailbox and one in Blum’s. This final she did correct in entrance of Chantal, yet there have been lots of different papers in there already. She grew to become flippantly and requested Chantal to make a few copies. Her mom had regularly maintained, again within the days whilst Zee and her father had performed hide-and-seek round the residence, her father as gleeful as any eight-year-old, that undeniable sight was once the simplest position to conceal. They’d speak Gracie into hiding, and once they chanced on her she’d been sitting within the kitchen correct the place they’d left her, smoking a Virginia narrow.

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