The subtitle of Edwards's Twain-indebted debut, written over the course of 30 years, might be "A California Yankee in Doctor Freud's Court." Following a physical assault, Stan "Wheeler" Burden is precipitated into the past1897 Vienna, to be exactfrom 1988 San Francisco. Wheeler has been a teenage baseball star and famed rock 'n' roller, but he's dreamed of Vienna since his prep school days, where his teacher, Arnauld Esterhazy, instilled a love of the city's gilded paradoxes. Vienna of 1897 is indeed hopping: Freud is discovering the Oedipus complex, Mahler is conducting his symphonies, and the mayor, Karl Lueger, is inventing modern, populist anti-Semitismwhich the young Hitler will soon internalize. Making this a true oedipal drama, Wheeler's father and grandparents come to town, too, all at different ages, and with very different agendas. Edwards has great fun with time travel paradoxes and anachronisms, but the real romance in this book is with the period, topped by nostalgia for the old-school American elite, as represented by the we-all-went-to-the-same-prep-school Burdens. This novel ends up a sweet, wistful elegy to the fantastic promise and failed hopes of the 20th century. (Aug.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
The Little Bookby Selden Edwards, Jeff Woodman
Unabridged CDs - 12 CDs, 15 hours
An irresistible triumph of the imagination more than thirty years in the making, The Little Book is a breathtaking love story that spans generations, ranging from fin de siècle Vienna through the pivotal moments of the twentieth century.See more details below
Unabridged CDs - 12 CDs, 15 hours
An irresistible triumph of the imagination more than thirty years in the making, The Little Book is a breathtaking love story that spans generations, ranging from fin de siècle Vienna through the pivotal moments of the twentieth century.
It is 1988, and 47-year-old Wheeler Burden, minding his own business in San Francisco, suddenly finds himself walking along a Viennese street-in 1897. Historical figures including Sigmund Freud, Gustav Mahler, and Gustav Klimt each play roles in Edwards's debut novel, but the main characters are Wheeler's own relatives, strangely collected in a magical time and space. The stellar, low-key narration by Jeff Woodman (An Ideal Husband) helps move along this story, in which fantasy and history combine to create a beautiful snapshot of the beginning of the modern age. Recommended for medium-sized and large fiction collections. [Audio clip available through
- Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- Unabridged, 13 CDs
- Product dimensions:
- 5.30(w) x 5.80(h) x 1.60(d)
- Age Range:
- 14 Years
What People are saying about this
-Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air
"Delightfully mad. . .a thrilling adventure."
-San Francisco Chronicle
"The product of a writer in full command of his gifts."
"A wide-ranging novel of grand ideas. . .a graceful waltz of a book, spinning at times at dizzying speed, but leaving behind a haunting, unforgettable melody."
-New Orleans Times-Picayune
"Back to the Future for the intellectual set."
"Inventive, bracing, poignant and well written. . . it should be at the top of everyone's summer reading list."
"It's hard not to be thoroughly taken with such an approach to both the real and imagined past."
-New York Daily News
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