We only know so much : a novel

by Crane, Elizabeth, 1961-

Format: Print Book 2012
Availability: Available at 2 Libraries 2 of 3 copies
Available (2)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Main Library First Floor - Fiction Stacks FICTION Crane
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  First Floor - Fiction Stacks
Call Number  FICTION Crane
Sewickley Public Library Fiction F CRA
Location  Sewickley Public Library
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  F CRA
Unavailable (1)
Location Collection Status
Pleasant Hills Public Library Adult Fiction CHECKED OUT
Location  Pleasant Hills Public Library
Collection  Adult Fiction
A funny and moving debut novel that follows four generations of a singularly weird American family, all living under one roof, as each member confronts a moment of crisis in a narrative told through a uniquely quirky, charming, and unforgettable voice. Acclaimed short story writer Elizabeth Crane, well known to public radio listeners for her frequent and captivating contributions to WBEZ Chicago's Writer's Block Party, delivers a sublime, poignant, and often hilarious first novel, perfect for fans of Jessica Anya Blau's The Summer of Naked Swim Parties and Heather O'Neill's Lullabies for Little Criminals.

"Crane has a distinctive and eccentric voice that is consistent and riveting." --New York Times Book Review

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "*Starred Review* After three scintillating short story collections, Crane delivers her first novel, a tragicomedy of epic familial malfunctions. Four generations of Copelands are finding problematic ways of coping in a big old house in a small midwestern town. Gordon subjects everyone to tedious recitations, ruining breakfast, for instance, with a lecture about pancakes. His wife, Jean, stopped listening long ago. Just as she tunes out their bitchy and confused 19-year-old daughter, Priscilla; pays too little attention to their sweet and precocious 9-year-old son, Otis; and deflects the cutting remarks of Gordon's elegantly commanding 98-year-old grandmother, Vivian, while trying to care for Gordon's father, Theodore, a lovely man afflicted with Parkinson's. Jean found secret happiness with a lover but now struggles to hide her despair over his shocking suicide and is oblivious to everyone else's needs and sorrows. As Crane illuminates each floundering character's thoughts and fears, she addresses the reader in the first-person plural, admitting at one point, We know a lot, but not everything. Not only doesn't the allegedly omniscient narrator know all, Crane avers we barely understand ourselves, let alone our loved ones. Although Crane's quicksilver humor and facile plot can feel glib, this is an irresistible and winsome read. A truly astute tale of love neglected and reclaimed, family resiliency, spiritual inquiries, and personal metamorphoses.--Seaman, Donna Copyright 2010 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "At the heart of the dysfunctional Copland family, in Crane's debut novel (after You Must Be This Happy to Enter, her third short story collection), is bookish wife and mother Jean, embroiled in an affair with a suicidal lover. Her husband, Gordon, remains oblivious, too busy worrying that he's lost his mind after a run-in with an ex-girlfriend he doesn't even remember. Their daughter, Priscilla, is a fashionista desperate to become a reality TV star, while their nine-year-old son, Otis, has fallen in love for the very first time. Gordon's father is struggling with a Parkinson's diagnosis, and family matriarch, Vivian, is determined to overcome long-held fears. Crane's novel is filled with deliciously idiosyncratic characters, humorous and distinct narration, and a whole lot of personality. Each character's emotional growth is just enough to satisfy, without being overbearing. And while a family overview at the start makes for a tricky entree, Crane's summer novel has undeniable heart. Agent: Alice Tasman, Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Dysfunctional families -- Fiction.
Families -- Fiction.
Extended families -- Fiction.
Domestic fiction.
Publisher New York :Harper Perennial,2012
Edition 1st ed.
Language English
Notes "P.S. insights, interviews & more"--Cover.
Description 280, 14 pages ; 21 cm
ISBN 9780062099471 (pbk.)
0062099477 (pbk.)
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