Jennifer Egan - A Visit From the Goon Squad - Little, Brown Book Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781780331164
    • Publication date:24 Mar 2011
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781849017404
    • Publication date:17 Mar 2011

A Visit From the Goon Squad

By Jennifer Egan

  • Paperback
  • £8.99

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize. A brilliantly entertaining novel about memory, time, art and how humans connect at every level.

Jennifer Egan's spellbinding novel circles the lives of Bennie Salazar, an ageing former punk rocker and record executive, and Sasha, the passionate, troubled young woman he employs. Although Bennie and Sasha never discover each other's pasts, the reader does, in intimate detail, along with the secret lives of a host of other characters whose paths intersect with theirs, over many years, in locales as varied as New York, San Francisco, Naples, and Africa.

We first meet Sasha in her mid-thirties, on her therapist's couch in New York City, confronting her long-standing compulsion to steal. Later, we learn the genesis of her turmoil when we see her as the child of a violent marriage, then a runaway living in Naples, then as a college student trying to avert the suicidal impulses of her best friend.

We meet Bennie Salazar at the melancholy nadir of his adult life-divorced, struggling to connect with his nine-year-old son, listening to a washed up band in the basement of a suburban house-and then revisit him in 1979, at the height of his youth, shy and tender, revelling in San Francisco's punk scene as he discovers his ardour for rock and roll and his gift for spotting talent. We learn what became of his high school gang-who thrived and who faltered-and we encounter Lou Kline, Bennie's catastrophically careless mentor, along with the lovers and children left behind in the wake of Lou's far flung sexual conquests and meteoric rise and fall.

A Visit from the Goon Squad is a book about the interplay of time and music, about survival, about the stirrings and transformations set inexorably in motion by even the most passing conjunction of our fates. In a breathtaking array of styles and tones ranging from tragedy to satire to Powerpoint, Egan captures the undertow of self-destruction that we all must either master or succumb to; the basic human hunger for redemption; and the universal tendency to reach for both-and escape the merciless progress of time-in the transporting realms of art and music. Sly, startling, exhilarating work from one of our boldest writers.

Biographical Notes

Jennifer Egan is the author of The Keep, Look at Me, The Invisible Circus, and the story collection Emerald City. Her stories have been published in The New Yorker, Harper's Magazine, GQ, Zoetrope, All-Story, and Ploughshares, and her nonfiction appears frequently in The New York Times Magazine. She lives with her husband and sons in Brooklyn.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781780330969
  • Publication date: 09 Jun 2011
  • Page count: 368
  • Imprint: Corsair
A must read. Irresistible. Fiction of the highest quality. — Sunday Times.
It may be the smartest book you can get your hands on this summer. — Los Angeles Times
Exhilirating...arresting...brilliant. Turn up the music...and curl up with The Goon Squad. — Washington Post

A great work of fiction, a profound and glorious exploration of the fullness and complexity of the human condition. . . . An extraordinary new work of fiction.

— The New York Press
Egan's precise, calm underwater prose is a persistent pleasure. — Daily Telegraph.
A delight. — The Observer.
A Visit from the Goon Squad [is] an exhilarating, big-hearted, three-headed beast of a story. . . . [A] genius as a writer. . . . We see ourselves in all of Egan's characters because their stories of heartbreak and redemption seem so real they could be our own, regardless of the soundtrack. Such is the stuff great novels are made of. — Marie-Claire
Clever. Edgy. Groundbreaking. . . . It features characters about whom you come to care deeply as you watch them doing things they shouldn't, acting gloriously, infuriatingly human. — The Chicago Tribune
A rich and rewarding novel. — Philadelphia Inquierer
"[Egan is] a boldly intellectual writer who is not afraid to apply her equally powerful intuitive skills to her ambitious projects. . . . While it's a time-trekking, tech-freakin' doozie, the characters' lives and fates claim the story first and foremost, and we are pulled right in. . . . Brilliantly structured, with storylike chapters." — Elle
Jennifer Egan is a rare bird: an experimental writer with a deep commitment to character, whose fiction is at once intellectually stimulating and moving. . . . It's a tricky book, but in the best way. When I got to the end, I wanted to start from the top again immediately, both to revisit the characters and to understand better how the pieces fit together. Like a masterful album, this one demands a replay. — The San Francisco Chronicle
The star-crossed marriage of lucid prose and expertly deployed postmodern switcheroos that helped shoot Egan to the top of the genre bending new school is alive and well in this graceful yet wild novel . . . powerful. — Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Sparkling. — The Guardian
Egan is a writer of cunning subtlety, embedding within the risky endeavors of seductively complicated characters a curious bending of time . . . a hilarious melancholy, enrapturing, unnerving, and piercingly beautiful mosaic of a novel. — Donna Seaman, Booklist (starred review)
Poetry and pathos . . . Egan conveys personality so swiftly and with such empathy. . . . Yet she is not a conventional dystopian novelist; distinctions between the virtual and the real may be breaking down in this world, but her characters have recognizable emotions and convictions, which is why their compromises and uncertainties continue to move us. . . . Another ambitious change of pace from talented and visionary Egan, who reinvents the novel for the 21st century while affirming its historic values. — Kirkus Review (starred review)
For all its postmodern flourishes, Goon Squad is as traditional as a Dickens novel. . . . Her aim is not so much to explode traditional storytelling as to explore how it responds to the pressures and opportunities of the digital age. Egan herself does not appear to be on Facebook, but A Visit From the Goon Squad will likely make her many new friends. — Newsweek
A stunningly resourceful writer — Guardian
Egan's a daunting stylist, and she's in blistering form for these interlocking narratives about the milieu surrounding an aging and waning music producer. Essentially, it's a story about getting mugged by the passage of time, and along the way she interrogates how rebellion ages, influence corrupts, habits turn to addictions, and lifelong friendships fluctuate. You also might know this as the novel that has a chapter written in PowerPoint. Egan: unpredictable and, here, brilliant. — Publisher's Weekly Books of the Year.
Thriftily evokes many disparate American lives in less than 300 pages, vividly showing how the virtues of the realist tradition - historical depth and strong point of view - can be combined with a modernist aesthetic of fragmentation and dissolution. — Pankaj Mishra, Guardian
An overlooked masterpiece. — thisislondon.com
If you're going to read one new novel this summer, it should be this. — Evening Standard
Warm, witty and wise. — Sunday Express
Wickedly funny. — Harper's Bazaar
Stunningly good. — Evening Standard
Stories that defy narrative conventions. — Financial Times
Dazzling. — Irish Times
Fiction of the highest quality. — The Sunday Times
The coolest of summer's must-reads. — The Lady
The most exciting novel I've read this year. — Olivia Laing, Observer
You won't have read anything quite like it before. — Grazia
Hachette Audio

Inheritance

Jenny Eclair
Authors:
Jenny Eclair
Sphere

Whisper Network

Chandler Baker
Authors:
Chandler Baker
Fleet

Nina X

Ewan Morrison
Authors:
Ewan Morrison

Nina X is loosely inspired by the real case of a tiny Maoist cult in London whose leader kept five women trapped for more than twenty years.Nina X has no books, no toys and no privacy. She has nothing that might be described as love. Her closest emotional connection is with the birds she sees outside her bedroom window, when she is daring enough to remove the plasterboard that covers it. She has never been outside her small south London house. She has never met another child. She has no mother and no father; she has a Leader (a man), and she has three female comrades. The all-powerful Leader has named her The Project; she is being raised in total ideological purity, entirely separated from the false gods of capitalism and the cult of the self. He has her record everything in her journal, to track her thoughts; he makes her revise the entries obsessively, until they fit with his narrative. Her words are erased, over and over again.

Sphere

Days of Wonder

Keith Stuart
Authors:
Keith Stuart

'A story of life, love and hope - the perfect antidote to today's world. Phenomenal'CLARE MACKINTOSHThe incredible, life-affirming new novel by the author of the Richard & Judy Book Club Bestseller A Boy Made of Blocks for fans of Matt Haig and Jojo Moyes.Tom, devoted single father to Hannah, is the manager of a tiny local theatre. On each of her birthdays, its colourful cast of part-time actors have staged a fantastical production just for her - a day of wonder. However hard life gets, all Tom wants to do is make every moment magical for her. Now, as Hannah begins to spread her wings, the theatre comes under threat of closure and the two could lose one another. But maybe, just maybe, one final day of magic might just save them both.A story about finding joy in everyday life, Days of Wonder is the most beautiful and uplifting novel you'll read all year.'Days of Wonder is a heartwarming and magical story. A wonderful read' LIBBY PAGE, AUTHOR OF THE LIDO'So powerful, yet incredibly gentle and poignant. Utterly and completely beautiful' JOANNA CANNON'Utterly enchanting . . . a truly beautiful story' RUTH HOGAN'This is the most emotionally powerful book we've read all year' HEAT'Tugs at your heart' DAILY MAIL'Fans of Jojo Moyes' Me Before You will love Days of Wonder. Made me laugh and cry in turn' GOOD HOUSEKEEPING'A lovely, funny and very moving novel' SUN'It's a long time since a book made me laugh out loud and cry so much' TRACY REES'A beautiful read' CLOSER'The publishing sensation of the year' MAIL ON SUNDAY ON A BOY MADE OF BLOCKS'An uplifting read, full of humour and heart' SUNDAY MIRRORREADERS LOVE DAYS OF WONDER:'Beautiful. Powerful. Emotional. Heartwarming. Bold. Touching. Heartbreaking. Wonderful. Outstanding. Brave. A must buy. A must read' BETWEEN THE PAGES BOOK CLUB'I didn't think Keith's novel A Boy Made of Blocks could be topped, but he's done it' GOODREADS REVIEWER'This is a truly wonderful story, and I recommend it to anyone with a heart - broken or otherwise' GOODREADS REVIEWER'I can't stress how amazing this book is. I truly believe that 2018's must-read novel has arrived'WHISPERING STORIES'Catapulted itself into my top five reads of all time' GOODREADS REVIEWER'Brilliantly done and backed up with a cast of lovely characters. I adore this book' GOODREADS REVIEWER'Just wonderful, a delicately finished story full of joy, loyalty, heartache and love' GOODREADS REVIEWER'Keith Stuart is fast emerging as one of the UK's great emotive writers when it comes to finding the beauty in everyday life' BEN VEAL WRITES

Corsair

Where the Crawdads Sing

Delia Owens
Authors:
Delia Owens

#1 New York Times BestsellerA Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick"I can't even express how much I love this book! I didn't want this story to end!" Reese Witherspoon"Painfully beautiful." The New York Times Book ReviewFor years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Celeste Ng, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.

Little, Brown

An Orchestra of Minorities

Chigozie Obioma
Authors:
Chigozie Obioma
Sphere

This Child of Ours

Sadie Pearse
Authors:
Sadie Pearse
Corsair

Never Anyone But You

Rupert Thomson
Authors:
Rupert Thomson
Little, Brown Young Readers US

How She Died, How I Lived

Mary Crockett
Authors:
Mary Crockett

I was one of five. The five girls Kyle texted that day. The girls it could have been. Me. Lindsey Farrier. Taylor Avril. Blair Mattern. Jamie Stroud. Only Jamie--beautiful, saintly Jamie--was kind enough to respond. And it got her killed. On the eve of Kyle's sentencing a year after Jamie's death, all the other Chosen Ones are coping in various ways, but our narrator is stuck. She's still trying to figure out why she gets to live, while Jamie is dead. Now she finds herself drawn to Charlie, Jamie's boyfriend--knowing all the while that their relationship will always be haunted by what-ifs and why-nots. How do you go on living when you know it could have been you? Maybe should have been you?

Little, Brown US

The Latecomers

Helen Klein Ross
Authors:
Helen Klein Ross

In 1908, sixteen-year-old Bridey runs away from her small town in Ireland with her same-age sweetheart Thom. But when Thom dies suddenly of ship fever on their ocean crossing, Bridey finds herself alone and pregnant in a strange new world. Forced by circumstance to give up the baby for adoption, Bridey finds work as a maid for the Hollingworth family at a lavish, sprawling estate. It's the dawn of a new century: innovative technologies are emerging, women's roles are changing, and Bridey is emboldened by the promise of a fresh start. She cares for the Hollingworth children as if they were her own, until a mysterious death changes Bridey and the household forever. For decades, the terrible secrets of Bridey's past continue to haunt the family. And in the present day, after a strange blue bottle is found hidden beneath old wallpaper, the youngest Hollingworth makes a connection that finally brings these dark ghost stories into the light. Told in interweaving timelines and rich with detailed history, romance and dark secrets, Helen Klein Ross' THE LATECOMERS spans a century of America life and reminds us all that we can never truly leave the past behind.

Virago

The Friend

Sigrid Nunez
Authors:
Sigrid Nunez

WINNER OF THE 2018 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF 2018A moving story of love, friendship, grief, healing, and the magical bond between a woman and her dog.When a woman unexpectedly loses her lifelong best friend and mentor, she finds herself burdened with the unwanted dog he has left behind. Her own battle against grief is intensified by the mute suffering of the dog, a huge Great Dane traumatised by the inexplicable disappearance of its master, and by the threat of eviction: dogs are prohibited in her apartment building.While others worry that grief has made her a victim of magical thinking, the woman refuses to be separated from the dog except for brief periods of time. Isolated from the rest of the world, increasingly obsessed with the dog's care, determined to read its mind and fathom its heart, she comes dangerously close to unravelling. But while troubles abound, rich and surprising rewards lie in store for both of them.Elegiac and searching, The Friend is both a meditation on loss and a celebration of human-canine devotion."A beautiful book ... a world of insight into death, grief, art, and love." -Wall Street Journal"A penetrating, moving meditation on loss, comfort, memory...Nunez has a wry, withering wit." -NPR"Dry, allusive and charming...the comedy here writes itself." The New York Times

Piatkus

The Au Pair

Emma Rous
Authors:
Emma Rous
Sphere

Every Colour of You

Amelia Mandeville
Authors:
Amelia Mandeville
Piatkus

Deep Blue

Jane O'Reilly
Authors:
Jane O'Reilly

'A really fun, fast-paced read in an interesting universe.' Cat Rambo, author of Beasts of TabatDate: 27th September 2188. Vessel: The Alcatraz 2. Prison Ship Location: UNKNOWNJinnifer Blue opens her eyes to find herself in a nightmare. Her plan to expose the horrific truth behind the government's secret Second Species programme has failed, and now she's being turned into a weapon by her worst enemy . . . her mother. At the other end of the galaxy Caspian Dax, ferocious space pirate and Jinn's sometime lover, is facing an even more terrifying fate. He's being forced to fight in the arena on Sittan, a pitiless, ruthless alien landscape where blood is the only prize that matters. They will use him, destroy him, change him. Jinn has only one chance - to go to Sittan and find Dax before his mind is completely destroyed. She must rely on her friends and one old enemy, leave her beloved ship the Mutant behind, and travel to a hostile planet. But hardest of all, she must keep faith that when she finds Dax, there will be something left of the man she knew. One thing's for sure: the fight has only just begun. WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT THE SECOND SPECIES SERIES:'I was addicted from the first page! An intriguing story line with interesting characters and a different view of the future and of space travel.' Amazon reviewer'This is one fabulous Sci-Fi story with a brilliantly well realised futuristic world' Reading Revelations'I just had seen the Last Jedi when I read this and was looking to read something that had similarly strong female characters, this didn't disappoint. I read it within a day because each chapter left me desperate to find out what happened next. It's sexy, action packed and it was easy to get sucked into the world created.' Amazon reviewer'A thrilling adult sci-fi adventure set in 2187 with a backdrop of a dying earth, space travel, aliens, technology and fabulous space pirates. The cast of characters are an eclectic mix of personalities with questionable morals, hang-ups and conflicts that are brought to life with vibrant description, thrilling action and humour.' Amazon reviewer

Virago

Promising Young Women

Caroline O'Donoghue
Authors:
Caroline O'Donoghue

'I loved it. The writing is whipsmart and so witty. A fabulous and timely novel.' Marian Keyes'So brilliant ... Compelling and illuminating ... I highly recommend it.' Dolly Alderton'A future classic.' Jane CaseyJane Peters is an adrift twenty-something by day, and a world-weary agony aunt by night. But when an office party goes too far, Jane dissolves into the high-stakes world of being the Other Woman: a role she has the right advice for, but not the smarts to follow through on. What starts out as a drunken mistake quickly unravels as Jane discovers that sex and power go hand-in-hand, and that it's hard to keep your head when you've become someone else's dirty little secret. And soon, her friendships, her sanity and even her life are put into jeopardy... 'Sharp, pithy and engaging' Irish Times'Brilliant' Elle'Deeply relatable and darkly comic ... It'll have you nodding with familiarity, thinking, laughing - and crying - as you race towards the end' Grazia'I loved Promising Young Women. It's like Bluebeard crossed with The Yellow Wallpaper neck-deep in zeitgeist. If Angela Carter was stuck in a soulless corporate job this would be the dark, delicious result' Sharlene Teo, author of Ponti

Fleet

The Great Believers

Rebecca Makkai
Authors:
Rebecca Makkai
Corsair

Mrs Fletcher

Tom Perrotta
Authors:
Tom Perrotta
Corsair

Blue Horses

Mary Oliver
Authors:
Mary Oliver

Maybe our world will grow kinder eventually.Maybe the desire to make something beautifulis the piece of God that is inside each of us.In this stunning collection, Mary Oliver returns to the imagery that has defined her life's work. Herons, sparrows, owls and kingfishers flit across the page in meditations on love, artistry and impermanence. Whether considering a bird's nest, the seeming patience of oak trees or the paintings of Franz Marc, Mary Oliver reminds us of the transformative power of attention and how much can be contained within the smallest moments.Blue Horses asks what it truly means to belong to this world and to live in it attuned to all its changes. 'To be human,' she shows us, 'is to sing your own song'.

Corsair

A Thousand Mornings

Mary Oliver
Authors:
Mary Oliver
Corsair

Manhattan Beach

Jennifer Egan
Authors:
Jennifer Egan

'This is a novel that will pull you in and under and carry you away on its rip tides . . . Its resonances continue to wash over the reader long after the novel ends' the Guardian'2017's Most Anticipated Book . . . it will suck you into its orbit and remind you just why it is you love reading' Stylist magazine'This is a novel that deserves to join the canon of New York stories' New York Times Book ReviewThe long-awaited novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Visit from the Goon Squad, Manhattan Beach opens in Brooklyn during the Great Depression.'We're going to see the sea,' Anna whispered. Anna Kerrigan, nearly twelve years old, accompanies her father to the house of a man who, she gleans, is crucial to the survival of her father and her family. Anna observes the uniformed servants, the lavishing of toys on the children, and some secret pact between her father and Dexter Styles. Years later, her father has disappeared and the country is at war. Anna works at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where women are allowed to hold jobs that had always belonged to men. She becomes the first female diver, the most dangerous and exclusive of occupations, repairing the ships that will help America win the war. She is the sole provider for her mother, a farm girl who had a brief and glamorous career as a Ziegfield folly, and her lovely, severely disabled sister. At a night club, she chances to meet Styles, the man she visited with her father before he vanished, and she begins to understand the complexity of her father's life, the reasons he might have been murdered. Mesmerizing, hauntingly beautiful, with the pace and atmosphere of a noir thriller and a wealth of detail about organized crime, the merchant marine and the clash of classes in New York, Egan's first historical novel is a masterpiece, a deft, startling, intimate exploration of a transformative moment in the lives of women and men, America and the world. Manhattan Beach is a magnificent novel by one of the greatest writers of our time.'Beautifully rendered . . . genuinely affecting and handsomely constructed. It moves for all the right reasons' Independent 'A gripping, modern version of a 19th century novel . . . such an absorbing read' Evening Standard