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The Coast of Akron | [Adrienne Miller]

The Coast of Akron

It has been five years since famed artist Lowell Haven painted one of his gloriously narcissistic self portraits. The estrangement of his daughter, Merit, is the main reason why. Now Lowell's partner Fergus hopes to lure Merit home by throwing an extravagant gala at the family's 65-room estate in Ohio.
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Publisher's Summary

Adrienne Miller has been hailed as "one of the wittiest and most humane writers we have" by critically acclaimed author Dave Eggers. She makes a splash with this ambitious debut novel, a humorous tale of a dysfunctional family of eccentrics.

It has been five years since famed artist Lowell Haven painted one of his gloriously narcissistic self portraits. The estrangement of his daughter, Merit, is the main reason why. Now Lowell's partner Fergus hopes to lure Merit home by throwing an extravagant gala at the family's 65-room estate in Ohio.

©2005 Adrienne Miller; (P)2005 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"The novel builds to a party that reunites the family, with disastrous and hilarious results. Literary-fiction aficionados should take note of this deft comic novel." (Booklist)
"Splendidly realized characters....Miller is a gifted ventriloquist." (Chicago Tribune)

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  •  
    Ewan Burlington, Ontario, Canada 11-12-08
    Ewan Burlington, Ontario, Canada 11-12-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    Overall
    "I Don't Know"

    I cannot figure out if I really like this book or not. All of the characters are so flawed, it actually reeks of reality. The narration was excellent as the three different narrators combined so well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    glamazon The Coast of Rhode Island 10-02-08
    glamazon The Coast of Rhode Island 10-02-08 Member Since 2003

    glam

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4503
    ratings
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    483
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    Overall
    "Dismal Drivel"

    Do Not. Waste. Your. Money.
    I know this type of fiction is huge right now, and it bugs me. Characters with no context. Who are these people and why should I care about them? Where do they live? Where, if anywhere, do they work? What do they wear? What do their families do? Even more basic, what do they even look like? Of course, this is trendy fiction and of the moment and none of that matters...

    I know this all is supposed to come out "later" in the novel, as part of the process but somehow "later" never arrives, and the story, though a toney picaresque, the literary equivalent of a painting by 16th century Hieronymus Bosch, just is not that interesting. It is, in fact, tiresome.

    The author has a gift for dialogue, and for first names that sound like brand names, and the end section with the interview illuminates some of the plot lines of the novel, but seriously you need the Cliff Notes for this one. The writer seems to be a rational and sane human so why does she deconstruct in her novel?

    Oh, I get it. She traded her "Northeast Ohio" roots for an elitist life in New York, writing fashionable fiction. But seriously, woman, to go with those MB's (Manolo Blahniks)? Get a story line.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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