A Naked Singularity: A Novel [NOOK Book]

Overview

A Naked Singularity tells the story of Casi, a child of Colombian immigrants who lives in Brooklyn and works in Manhattan as a public defender--one who, tellingly has never lost a trial. Never. In the book, we watch what happens when his sense of justice and even his sense of self begin to crack--and how his world then slowly devolves. It’s a huge, ambitious novel clearly in the vein of DeLillo, Foster Wallace, Pynchon, and even Melville, and it's told in a distinct, frequently hilarious voice, with a striking ...
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A Naked Singularity: A Novel

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Overview

A Naked Singularity tells the story of Casi, a child of Colombian immigrants who lives in Brooklyn and works in Manhattan as a public defender--one who, tellingly has never lost a trial. Never. In the book, we watch what happens when his sense of justice and even his sense of self begin to crack--and how his world then slowly devolves. It’s a huge, ambitious novel clearly in the vein of DeLillo, Foster Wallace, Pynchon, and even Melville, and it's told in a distinct, frequently hilarious voice, with a striking human empathy at its center. Its panoramic reach takes readers through crime and courts, immigrant families and urban blight, media savagery and media satire, scatology and boxing, and even a breathless heist worthy of any crime novel. If InfiniteJest stuck a pin in the map of mid-90s culture and drew our trajectory from there, A Naked Singularity does the same for the feeling of surfeit, brokenness, and exhaustion that permeates our civic and cultural life today. In the opening sentence of William Gaddis’s A Frolic of His Own, a character sneers, "Justice? You get justice in the next world. In this world, you get the law." A Naked Singularity reveals the extent of that gap, and lands firmly on the side of those who are forever getting the law.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Originally self-published in 2008, this leviathan novel is not for the fainthearted, although its crazy, contemporary voice is so compelling and audacious that plodding through it to the end has its rewards. Narrator Casi is a brilliant young public defender whose hilarious interactions with criminals and colleagues are so absurd, and justice so often fleeting, that an existential angst quickly takes hold, morality is turned on its head, and nothing much is funny anymore. Plot strands abound, among them Casi’s defense of a terminally ill drug addict, his advocacy of a Skittles-loving death row inmate whose execution might be a better fate than life in his dark cell, and a fellow lawyer who dreams up the perfect crime, which, despite its implausibility, gives the story momentum. Casi is humanized in scenes with his extended Colombian family—complete with a mute niece and a thoughtful sister—and with his friends, although his neighbors in Brooklyn are little more than surreal mouthpieces for the author’s philosophical musings. In Casi’s twisted postmodern world, the justice system is a farce, the heroes mostly aligned with the accused, and a person can care desperately but have so little power that his life becomes heavy enough to collapse into itself. (May)
The Quarterly Conversation
One of the best and most original novels of the decade. . . . It's one of those fantastic, big, messy books like Darconville's Cat or Infinite Jest or Women and Men, though it's not really like any of those books or those writers. . . . . But see here: I refuse to divulge too much of the plot, because watching it unfold is one of the great joys of the novel. . . . . What I keep coming back to is the audacity of this novel, which is truly a towering, impressive work—De La Pava's not hesitant to break and then mirror the narrative with the story of professional boxer Wilfred Benitez, or insert a recipe, none of which hinder the narrative but rather shape the entirety of the book, making the actual story and its effect on the characters (and the characters'' actions that shape the story, et cetera) more profound. . . .  If you like The Wire, if you like rewarding, difficult fiction, if you like literary, high-quality artistic and hilarious yet moving novels that are difficult to put down, I can’t recommend A Naked Singularity enough.
Scott Bryan Wilson
Review of Contemporary Fiction
Casi's voice is the combination of brashness and world-weary humanity you''d find in a cynic who''d been scratched to reveal the disappointed idealist beneath. . . . The whole feels like The Recognitions as legal thriller, a glorious mess with dashes of Powers, minor Pynchon, and White Noise, among many others. . . . [I]n its ambitions and shortcomings and shaggy glory, A Naked Singularity is perhaps most reminiscent of The Broom of the System. So that bodes well.
Tim Feeney
The Notes
A Naked Singularity looks like an unreadable brick, bloated at 700 pages and likely dense with esoterica. Instead it is a fine encyclopedic romp in the Joyce/Pynchon/Wallace tradition, one with an effortless flow and arresting setting: the American judicial system as vortical funhouse.
Miles Klee
The National
Weird, brilliant.
Steve Donoghue
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226141800
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 4/9/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 688
  • Sales rank: 333,569
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Sergio De La Pava is a writer who does not live in Brooklyn.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(8)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 28, 2012

    For select readers only!!

    The strength of this author's writing ability is apparent. But, his approach to a "story" is a difficult path to follow. There are times where you become totally immersed in his story line and then he jumps to a what seems a completely different plot line. I sometimes find myself skimming across the waves flipping my iPAD almost instantaneously; then in another section I find my self in a bog as if i were lifting my feet laboriously one at a time from mud sucking at my feet and I put it down to gather more strength...

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2014

    Ranger

    Cleans his arm from the cut and goes to the weaponry res three.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2014

    Keep going

    Keep going

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2014

    To shy writer: AWSOME!

    Keep going!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2014

    Shy Love ~ Chapter One

    Sunlight wafted radiantly through the window, creeping up Rainbow Dash's bedsheets and slowly but surely, it roused her from her slumber. Dash opened her eyes, yawning.
    <p>
    "Wha...? Oh - ur...It's morning." She stuttered, blinded by the beam of light in her eyes.
    <p>
    Flying downstairs, she made herself a bowl of 'NiteSky cereal - with Marshmallows!' Dash finished eating in a flash, gulping down her milk with a few strong swallows.
    <p>
    No sooner had she finished, a knock sounded at her door. "Oh, come on!" Yelled an annoyed Rainbow Dash, her pink eyes glazed over with fury. "It's only 8 in the morning!"
    <p>
    With a tired sigh, Dash opened the door. Fluttershy hovered in front of it, smiling shyly. "Um, I know you're probably just getting up, but...um, I wanted to just drop by to say hi because...I have a little something I wanted to tell you."
    <p>
    Dash nodded, a bit tiredly. "Sure, Flutters. Just make it quick. Don't have all day."
    <p>
    Fluttershy faltered, her bottom lip quivering. "Rainbow...I need to go inside to tell you this. It's really....important."
    <p>
    Dash raised an eyebrow at her pegasus friend. "Alriiight. Please, just make it quick. I need to go to Wonderbolts training practice today."
    <p>
    Rainbow led Fluttershy into her house, closing the door. "Kay. What is it?"
    <p>
    "Uh, well...I...Dash...I wanted to take it into my hooves to tell each of you the...news. That's why I came here."
    <p>
    Dash looked confused. "News. What...news?"
    <p>
    "The news....That...I'm....that...I'm Leaving."
    <p>
    Rainbow Dash nearly fell over with shock. "Whaaat? Why?"
    <p>
    Flutters hung her head, her pastel pink mane cascading over the left side of her face. "I have to... leave... because... The EPAAW, Equestrian Pony Association of Animal Welfare, has chosen me to be their representative and head animal trainer."
    <p>
    Dash's mouth hung open. "That's - That's incredible! But...you're leaving..."
    <p>
    Fluttershy looked tearful. "The EPAAW's main area is all the way on the other side of Equestria. I'm going to go live there in a large mansion that's big enough for all of my animals and me. It hurts me to leave all of my friends...but...I.....I just couldn't say no. It's such an....opportunity. You can come visit me, Dashie."
    <p>
    Dash's heart panged when Flutters used her favorite 'pet name.' "Flutters...I...I'm going to miss you...so...much..."
    <p>
    Fluttershy blushed as Dash hugged her in a warm embrace. She could feel Rainbow's strong chest against hers, and her forelegs squeezing against Fluttershy's soft back.
    <p>
    There was a soft sniff, and Flutters realized Dash was crying. When Rainbow finally broke away from Fluttershy, she was still crying a little. They sat there, looking into each other's eyes, together as one. It seemed like eternity until Dash broke the silence.
    <p>
    "Fluttershy - " Oh, how could she say this? She wanted to express her feelings for Flutters, but it was so hard.
    <p>
    "Fluttershy. What if I told you...um...a little something along the lines of...um...our...relationship?"
    <p>
    Fluttershy blushed a deep crimson. "Go on, Dashie."
    <p>
    Dash looked into Fluttershy's eyes. "We're really...really good friends. I like you. A lot. But...not just in a friend-like way. Like...like in a special way. Like in a way I feel in my heart for you. Whenever me and you are together." Her voice cracked. "Fluttershy....I love you." In a swift, passionate movement, Rainbow locked lips with Fluttershy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 12, 2014

    There were some funny moments, interesting characters, and occas

    There were some funny moments, interesting characters, and occasional lovely writing, but nothing like enough.

    I found this long winded and tedious, and struggled through to half way before giving up - which is something I very rarely do.

    I received a free book in return for an honest review.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2012

    Cool cover

    U should try enlargeing the cover.

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 3, 2012

    how can you not read this book?

    how can you not read this book?

    0 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2015

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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