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The Unfinished Novel and Other Stories

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eBook published by Vintage (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book
In this vital and heartbreaking collection of stories, Valerie Martin, the bestselling author of Mary Reilly and the internationally acclaimed Property, turns an unflinching eye upon artists—driven and blocked, desired and detested, infamous and sublime, as they struggle beneath the tyranny of Art to reconcile their audience with their muse.

A painter who owes his small success to a man he despises, discovers that his passivity has cost him the love that might have set him free. A writer of modest talents encounters the old love who once betrayed him; now she repels him, yet the unfinished novel she leaves in his hands may surpass anything he could ever produce himself. An American poet in Rome finds herself forced to choose between her lover and a world so alien it takes her voice away. A print maker, who has reached a certain age, enters so deeply into the magical world of her imagination that she can never find her way back. In captivating, luminous prose, Martin explores the trials and rewards of human relationships and creative endeavor with all the ease and insight of a writer at the top of her form.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
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In this vital and heartbreaking collection of stories, Valerie Martin, the bestselling author of Mary Reilly and the internationally acclaimed Property, turns an unflinching eye upon artists—driven and blocked, desired and detested, infamous and sublime, as they struggle beneath the tyranny of Art to reconcile their audience with their muse.

A painter who owes his small success to a man he despises, discovers that his passivity has cost him the love that might have set him free. A writer of modest talents encounters the old love who once betrayed him; now she repels him, yet the unfinished novel she leaves in his hands may surpass anything he could ever produce himself. An American poet in Rome finds herself forced to choose between her lover and a world so alien it takes her voice away. A print maker, who has reached a certain age, enters so deeply into the magical world of her imagination that she can never find her way back. In captivating, luminous prose, Martin explores the trials and rewards of human relationships and creative endeavor with all the ease and insight of a writer at the top of her form.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Product Details
eBook (224 pages)
Published: December 18, 2007
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307429537
Other books byValerie Martin
  • Trespass

    Trespass
    Two women, Chloe Dale, an artist comfortably ensconced in bucolic suburbia, and Salome Drago, a wily, seductive refugee from a country that no longer exists, confront each other in a Manhattan restaurant, and the battle lines are drawn. Toby Dale, son of the artist and ardent suitor of the refugee, is in no position to choose sides. Outside, the drumbeats for the impending invasion of Iraq drown out all argument, and those who object will soon be reduced to standing in the street. The story of two families—suspicious, territorial, naïve in their confidence that they are free of the past—Trespass unfolds with commanding force. It is a bracing, tender novel for the 21st century.

    The Confessions of Edward Day

    The Confessions of Edward Day
    A brilliant new novel set in the bohemian, glamorous theater world of 1970s New York, by the Orange Prize-winning author of Property.   It’s the 1970s in New York—rents are cheap, love is free, and with the explosion of theater venues off and off-off Broadway, aspiring actors will work for nothing in no clothes. Enter Edward Day, who wants more than anything to move an unsuspecting audience to an experience of emotional truth. But he must also contend with the drama of his own life: he is locked in a bitter rivalry with fellow actor Guy Margate, with whom he shares a marked physical resemblance and a fatal attraction to the beautiful, talented, and all-too-available Madeleine Delavergne. Edward’s pursuit of Madeleine is complicated by the fact that he owes Guy his life. In this riveting tale of paranoia, passion, jealousy, and relentless ambition, Edward will learn that the truth, in the theater as in life, is ever elusive and never inert.

    Italian Fever

    Italian Fever
    A Novel
    "Acutely observed...charmingly old-fashioned."--Los Angeles Times In Italian Fever, Valerie Martin redefines the Gothic novel in a compelling tale of one woman's headlong tumble into a mystery, art, and eros. Part romance, part gothic suspense story and wholly entertaining, Italian Fever is the story of the awakening of Lucy Stark, an American pragmatist. Lucy leads a quiet, solitary life working for a best-selling (but remarkably untalented) writer. When he dies at his villa in Tuscany, Lucy flies to Tuscany to settle his affairs. What begins as a grim chore soon threatens Stark's Emersonian self-reliance--and her very sense of what is real. The villa harbors secrets: a missing manuscript, neighbors whose Byzantine arrogance veils their dark past, a phantom whose nocturnal visits tear a gaping hole in Lucy's well-honed skepticism. And to complicate matters: Massimo, a married man whose tender attentions render Lucy breathless. Smart, sophisticated, achingly beautiful, Italian Fever is one of the most original and compelling novels of the year.

    Salvation

    Salvation
    Scenes from the Life of St. Francis
    Inspired by the fresco cycles that depict the life of St. Francis of Assisi, acclaimed author Valerie Martin tells the life of Francesco di Pietro Bernardone in a series of vividly realized “panels” of moments both crucial and ordinary. Drawing from myriad sources and moving in reverse chronological order, she begins in the dark, final days, with a suffering Francesco on the verge of death, then shows us the unwashed and innocent revolutionary, unafraid to lecture a pope on Christ’s message. We see his mystical friendship with Chiara di Offreducci, a nobleman’s daughter who turns her back on the world to join him, and finally, the frivolous young Francesco on the deserted road where his encounter with a leper leads him to an ecstatic embrace of God. Salvation is at once an illuminating glimpse into the medieval world and an original and intimate portrait of the man whose legend has resonated through the centuries. From the Trade Paperback edition.

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