Eight White Nights

( 5 )

Overview

Eight White Nights is a lushly romantic novel from the author of the critically acclaimed Call Me by Your Name.

Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Audiobook (MP3 on CD - MP3 - Unabridged CD)
$26.99
BN.com price
(Save 10%)$29.99 List Price
Other sellers (Audiobook)
  • All (8) from $1.99   
  • New (4) from $1.99   
  • Used (4) from $1.99   
Eight White Nights: A Novel

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook - First Edition)
$9.99
BN.com price
This digital version does not exactly match the physical book displayed here.

Overview

Eight White Nights is a lushly romantic novel from the author of the critically acclaimed Call Me by Your Name.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Marie Arana
…a collision of two eccentric souls that grows with mesmerizing intensity. This is a richly intellectual novel that will resemble nothing you've ever encountered. Despite its nods to Dostoyevsky and Rohmer, and for all the references to well-worn landmarks of a familiar city, it is an original to the core.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
This feverish novel from the author of Call Me by Your Name takes a microscope to a torrid romance–cum–battle of the sexes between two 20-something New Yorkers. Clara Brunschvicg and the unnamed narrator meet at a swank Christmas Eve party and immediately jockey for position. The ensuing grappling plays out over the course of the seven nights between that party and New Year's Eve. The motor that makes this dual character portrait hum is the narrator's uncertainty about sardonic beauty Clara's murky intentions. Aciman knows these types well, filling their romance with coffees, wealthy friends in Hudson County, and Rohmer film festivals, and he concocts ever more complex scenarios to dramatize the tension and uncertainty. This smart book is rich with the details of how skittish lovers interact. Aciman creates a private vernacular for the two while rarely failing to miss a telling smile or let so much as a line of dialogue go wasted. At times the narrator's wordiness drags—particularly when he intersperses the play-by-play of an intense moment with an extended analysis of the scene—but, mostly, the novel is taut and entirely authentic. (Feb.)
Kirkus Reviews
Luxurious, emotionally charged story of a love gone wrong-in about a week's time. The "white" of the title could refer to the wintry landscape, or to the blazing lights of Manhattan, or perhaps to the learned, tormented crowd in which Aciman's intellectually inclined protagonist moves, a tribe of people with names such as Muffy and Hans. "I am Clara," one fellow dinner partier announces behind the Christmas tree, which prompts Dostoyevskian inquiries on our narrator's part, yielding the apercu that "strained, indifferent, weary, and amused . . . it slipped between us like a meaningless formality that had to be gotten over with." Meaningless formalities turn into catty exchanges that border on the cruel, then into elective affinities and tender mercies, as our narrator finds himself swept up in a falling-in-love vortex that could go psychotic at any minute but thankfully does not. Aciman (Call Me By Your Name, 2007, etc.) is a poet of the sensitive bystander-not arch like Salinger, combative like Cheever or fraught like Updike, but occasionally stepping into their territories. When his characters say they're confused, they're confused-and when they say they love each other, well, the possibilities for misunderstanding are legion. Amid the "tuna-avocado miniature rolls . . . [and] seared scallop with a sprig of mache on a bed of slithered turnips with tamarind jelly," out zipping along on the Henry Hudson and the Taconic State Parkway, strolling up on the Upper East Side, his characters talk and act like real people, if real educated and well-heeled people, do. That is to say, they miss each other's signals with fateful regularity, caught up in their own tangles, but occasionally stealingkisses that taste "of bread and Viennese butter cookies" while hatching plans that never quite play out the way they're planned. In the end, it seems, every relationship is doomed to failure thanks to a surfeit of baggage-not that we shouldn't try all the same. A mature (though not in the R-rated sense) view of adult love-smart, carefully written and always fluent.
From the Publisher
"This is a richly intellectual novel that will resemble nothing you've ever encountered." —-The Washington Post
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400165735
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/15/2010
  • Format: MP3 on CD
  • Edition description: MP3 - Unabridged CD
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.60 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Andre Aciman

André Aciman is the author of the critically acclaimed novel Call Me by Your Name, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year; the memoir Out of Egypt; and False Papers: Essays on Exile and Memory.

Paul Boehmer, who has appeared on Broadway, on television, and in films, narrated an award-winning unabridged recording of Moby Dick.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

FIRST NIGHT

Halfway through dinner, I knew I’d replay the whole evening in reverse—the bus, the snow, the walk up the tiny incline, the cathedral looming straight before me, the stranger in the elevator, the crowded large living room where candlelit faces beamed with laughter and premonition, the piano music, the singer with the throaty voice, the scent of pinewood everywhere as I wandered from room to room, thinking that perhaps I should have arrived much earlier tonight, or a bit later, or thatI shouldn’t have come at all, the classic sepia etchings on the wall by the bathroom where a swinging door opened to a long corridor to private areas not intended for guests but took another turn toward the hallway and then, by miracle, led back into the same living room, where more people had gathered, and where, turning to me by the window where I thought I’d found a quiet spot behind the large Christmas tree, someone suddenly put out a hand and said, “I am Clara.”

I am Clara, delivered in a flash, as the most obvious fact in the world, as though I’d known it all along, or should have known it, and, seeing I hadn’t acknowledged her, or perhaps was trying not to, she’d help me stop the pretense and put a face to a name everyone had surely mentioned many times before.

In someone else, I am Clara would have sprung like a tentative conversation opener—meek, seemingly assertive, overly casual, distant, aired as an afterthought, the verbal equivalent of a handshake that has learned to convey firmness and vigor by overexerting an otherwise limp and lifeless grip. In a shy person, I am Clara would require so much effort that it might leave her drained and almost grateful when you failed to pick up the cue.

Here, I am Clara was neither bold nor intrusive, but spoken with the practiced, wry smile of someone who had said it too many times to care how it broke the silence with strangers. Strained, indifferent, weary, and amused—at herself, at me, at life for making introductions the tense, self-conscious things they are—it slipped between us like a meaningless formality that had to be gotten over with, and now was as good a time as any, seeing that the two of us were standing away from those who had gathered in the middle of the room and who were about to start singing. Her words sprung on me like one of those gusts that clear through obstacles and throw open all doors and windows, trailing April blossom in the heart of a winter month, stirring everything along their path with the hasty familiarity of people who, when it comes to other people, couldn’t care less and haven’t a thing to lose. She wasn’t bustling in nor was she skipping over tedious steps, but there was a touch of crisis and commotion in her three words that wasn’t unwelcome or totally unintended. It suited her figure, the darting arrogance of her chin, of the voile- thin crimson shirt which she wore unbuttoned to her breastbone, the swell of skin as smooth and forbidding as the diamond stud on her thin platinum necklace.

I am Clara. It barged in unannounced, like a spectator squeezing into a packed auditorium seconds before curtain time, disturbing everyone, and yet so clearly amused by the stir she causes that, no sooner she’s found the seat that will be hers for the rest of the season than she’ll remove her coat, slip it around her shoulders, turn to her new neighbor, and, meaning to apologize for the disruption without making too much of it, whisper a conspiring “I am Clara.” It meant, I’m the Clara you’ll be seeing all year long here, so let’s just make the best of it. I am the Clara you never thought would be sitting right next to you, and yet here I am. I’m the Clara you’ll wish to find here every one day of every month for

the remainder of this and every other year of your life—and I know it, and let’s face it, much as you’re trying not to show it, you knew it the moment you set eyes on me. I am Clara.

It was a cross between a ribbing “How couldn’t you know?” and “What’s with the face?” “Here,” she seemed to say, like a magician about to teach a child a simple trick, “take this name and hold it tight in your palm, and when you’re home alone, open your hand and think, Today I met Clara.” It was like offering an elderly gentleman a chocolate- hazelnut square just when he was about to lose his temper. “Don’t say anything until you’ve bitten into it.” She jostled you, but instantly made up for it before you’d even felt it, so that it wasn’t clear which had come first, the apology or the little jab, or whether both weren’t braided in the same gesture, spiraling around her three words like frisky death threats masquerading as meaningless pranks. I am Clara.

Life before. Life after.

Everything before Clara seemed so lifeless, hollow, stopgap. The after-Clara thrilled and scared me, a mirage of water beyond a valley of rattlesnakes.

I am Clara. It was the one thing I knew best and could always come back to each time I’d want to think of her—alert, warm, caustic, and dangerous. Everything about her radiated from these three words, as though they were a pressing bulletin mysteriously scribbled on the back of a matchbook that you slip into a wallet because it will always summon an evening when a dream, a would-be life, suddenly blossomed before you. It could be just that, a dream and nothing more, but it stirred so

fierce a desire to be happy that I was almost ready to believe I was indeed happy on the evening when someone blustered in, trailing April blossom in the heart of a winter month.

Would I still feel this way on leaving the party tonight? Or would I find cunning ways to latch on to minor defects so that they’d start to bother me and allow me to snuff the dream till it tapered off and lost its luster and, with its luster gone, remind me once again, as ever again, that happiness is the one thing in our lives others cannot bring.

I am Clara. It conjured her voice, her smile, her face when she vanished into the crowd that night and made me fear I’d already lost her, imagined her. “I am Clara,” I’d say to myself, and she was Clara all over again, standing near me by the Christmas tree, alert, warm, caustic, and dangerous.

I was—and I knew it within minutes of meeting her—already rehearsing never seeing her again, already wondering how to take I am Clara with me tonight and stow it in a drawer along with my cuff links, collar stays, my watch and money clip.

I was learning to disbelieve that this could last another five minutes, because this had all the makings of an unreal, spellbound interlude, when things open up far too easily and seem willing to let us into the otherwise closed circle that is none other than our very own life, our life as we've always craved to live it but cheat it at each turn, our life finally transposed in the right key, retold in the right tense, in a language that speaks to us and is right for us and us alone, our life finally made real and luminous because it's revealed, not in ours, but in someone else's voice, grasped from another's hand, caught on the face of someone who couldn't possibly be a stranger, but, because she is nothing but a stranger, holds our eyes with a gaze that says, Tonight I'm the face you put on your life and how you live it. Tonight, I am your eyes to the world looking back at you. I am Clara.

It meant: Take my name and whisper it to yourself, and in a week's time come back to it and see if crystals haven't sprouted around it.

I am Clara-she had smiled, as though she'd been laughing at something someone had just said to her and, borrowing the mirth started in another context, had turned to me behind the Christmas tree and told me her name, given me her hand, and made me want to laugh at punch lines I hadn't heard but whose drift corresponded to a sense of humor that was exactly like mine.

This is what I am Clara meant to me. It created the illusion of intimacy, of a friendship briefly interrupted and urgently resumed, as though we'd met before, or had crossed each other's path but kept missing each other and were being reintroduced at all costs now, so that in extending her hand to me, she was doing something we should have done much sooner, seeing we had grown up together and lost touch, or been through so much, perhaps been lovers a lifetime ago, until something as trivial and shameful as death had come between us and which, this time, she wasn't about to let happen.

I am Clara meant I already know you-this is no ordinary business-and if you think fate doesn't have a hand in this, think twice. We could, if you wish, stick to ordinary cocktail pleasantries and pretend this is all in your head, or we can drop everything, pay attention to no one, and, like children building a tiny tent in the middle of a crowded living room on Christmas Eve, enter a world beaming with laughter and premonition, where everything is without peril, where there's no place for shame, doubt, or fear, and where all is said in jest and in whimsy, because the things that are most solemn often come under the guise of mischief and merrymaking.

Excerpted from Eight White Nights by André Aciman.

Copyright 2010 by André Aciman.

Published in 2010 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or medium must be secured from the Publisher.

Read More Show Less

Reading Group Guide

About this Guide

The following author biography and list of questions about Eight White Nights are intended as resources to aid individual readers and book groups who would like to learn more about the author and this book. We hope that this guide will provide you a starting place for discussion, and suggest a variety of perspectives from which you might approach Eight White Nights.

About the Book

A young man goes to a Christmas party in upper Manhattan where a woman introduces herself with three simple words: “I am Clara.” Over the following seven days, they meet every evening at the cinema. Overwhelmed yet cautious, he treads softly. The tension between them builds gradually—marked by ambivalence, hope, and distrust—culminating in a final scene on New Year’s Eve in a final scene charged with magic and the passion. André Aciman yet again explores human emotion with uncompromising accuracy in this piercing new novel. Eight White Nights is a brilliant performance from a master prose stylist.

About the Author

ANDRÉ ACIMAN is the author of Call Me by Your Name, Out of Egypt, and False Papers, and is the editor of The Proust Project (all published by FSG). He teaches comparative literature at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He lives with his wife and family in Manhattan.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 24, 2010

    Beautiful read for people interested in emotional subtext

    I rarely review books online, but after seeing how negatively this wonderful book was characterized, I felt that I had to chime in. It's true: this book is short on dialogue and most of its beautiful prose is spent dissecting the emotional life of the main character - a character that you grow to know intimately, and only after several hundred pages realize that you don't even know his name. Anyone who's ever been in love knows that the feelings and thoughts that accompany the sensation are all-encompassing: put simply, even the most steady of us begin to second guess ourselves and our choices. We lie awake or sit at bars wondering about the feelings we're experiencing and the "what ifs" that appear as an endless parade. We then take whatever we learn from these introspective journeys and apply them to our life...leading to success or abject failure. The narrator in this book has experienced both, and thus he approaches his love interest with caution and extreme care, contemplating every choice before committing. This book explores (in depth) the inner monologue of a cloistered man falling in love. That's it. There's no "excitement," no "action," but there's plenty of gorgeous, relatable and heart-wrenching plot to go around. I can't imagine that this book is for everyone - but if you're fascinated by how the heart connects to the brain, then you'll love this piece.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted January 1, 2013

    Nursery

    The Nursery is a large, hollowed out tree stump. A bramble bush lays over the opening, to keep unwanted cats out. The nests are lined with cotton and wool from the moorlands beyond the territory, to help the queens and youngsters sleep better. Here, the kits will play until their sixth moon- a very special day!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The words are nice, but the book is boring

    A character utters a short sentence. Then follows paragraph after paragraph after paragraph of an inner monologue dissecting the possible meanings of those very few words. At first this was an interesting conceit but, ultimately, just makes for an incredibly boring read. Editorial reviews were practically ecstatic about the skill of the Aciman (comparing him to some mighty fine heavyweight authors), so I was very excited to purchase and read the book. I actually found any volume of Richard Taruskin's magisterial Oxford History of Music a far more interesting and entertaining read than this pile of sludge. If there is a plot, it is so buried in the endless navel-gazing by the protagonist that it is relegated to navel fuzz. It's like trying to watch a dvd by pressing the 'pause' button. Do not waste your money or your time.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 13, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    NOT FOR ME!!!

    Good money was paid for this book, therefore I am reading it. It is very difficult to try to determine the plot or purpose of this book. I am almost through and will celebrate when I finish. I think he is going to commit suicide. It appears to be about a guy thinking. Or maybe he is dreaming this. Whatever - it is not my cup of tea. Andre may be a noted writer, but I believe he was just trying to show his knowledge of words. Get a life!!!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted November 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)