In this brilliant mix of literary satire and crime caper, Frankie Abandonato, a small-time con man on the run, finds refuge by posing as V. S. Mohle - a famously reclusive writer - and teaching in a prestigious writing program somewhere in Texas. Streetwise and semiliterate, Frankie finds that being treated as a genius agrees with him.
The program has been funded by Rex Schoeninger, the world’s richest novelist, who is dying. Buzzards are circling, angling for the remains of Rex’s fortune, and Frankie quickly realizes that he has been presented with the opportunity of a lifetime. Complicating matters is the fact that Rex is haunted by a 25-year feud with the shadowy Mohle. What rankles Rex is that, while he has written 50 best sellers and never gotten an ounce of literary respect, Mohle wrote one slender novel, disappeared into the woods, and become an icon. Determined to come to terms with his past, Rex has arranged to bring his rival to Texas, only to find himself facing off against an imposter.
Famous Writers I Have Known is not just an unforgettable literary romp but also a surprisingly tender take on two men - one a scam artist frantic to be believed, the other an old lion desperate to be remembered.
©2014 James Magnuson (P)2013 Audible Inc.
"A gloriously farfetched tale, but alarmingly real to anyone who knows the weird world of MFA programs. Besides which, it's a shit-load of fun." (Peter Carey, two-time winner of the Booker Prize)
"There is scarcely any passion without struggle." Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays
An enervating account of the eccentric adventures of certain vainglorious illuminati, meant mainly for the amusement of MFAs and similar "clever" cognoscenti.
I cannot recommend this book given how boring the actual novel ended up being. Great idea but uninspired and plodding story.
Maybe a mystery.
He didn't do a poor job narrating but his voice did not seem well suited to the character. Unless the character was supposed to read like a nebbish.
No. See review above.
Audible recommended this book and by doing so has caused me to lose all faith in the accuracy of its recommendations.
Say something about yourself!
Yes. The author has quite an imagination. I loved Kevin T. Collins narration. He's one of the best audible narrators I've listened to.
When V.S Mohle (Frankie) got the briefcase (loaded with money) out of the gym's locker, and lost all of it when he tripped outside the front of the gym. Also, when Mohle and Rex went on hike and old Rex fell and had a stroke.
The end of the story when the REAL V.S Mohle came to see Frankie at the prison.
Highly recommend this book. Should be on The New York Times Best Seller list. I would love to read more by the author, James Magnuson.
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