The Sixteenth of June

( 2 )

Overview

A finely observed, wry social satire set in Philadelphia over the course of a single day, this soaring debut novel paints a moving portrait of a family at a turning point.

Leopold Portman, a young IT manager a few years out of college, dreams of settling down in Philly’s bucolic suburbs and starting a family with his fiancée, Nora. A talented singer in mourning for her mother, Nora has abandoned a promising opera career and wonders what her destiny holds. Her best friend, ...

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The Sixteenth of June: A Novel

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Overview

A finely observed, wry social satire set in Philadelphia over the course of a single day, this soaring debut novel paints a moving portrait of a family at a turning point.

Leopold Portman, a young IT manager a few years out of college, dreams of settling down in Philly’s bucolic suburbs and starting a family with his fiancée, Nora. A talented singer in mourning for her mother, Nora has abandoned a promising opera career and wonders what her destiny holds. Her best friend, Stephen, Leopold’s brother, dithers in his seventh year of graduate school and privately questions Leo and Nora’s relationship. On June 16, 2004, the three are brought together—first for a funeral, then for an annual Bloomsday party. As the long-simmering tensions between them come to a head, they are forced to confront the choices of their pasts and their hopes for the future.

Clever, lyrical, and often hilarious, The Sixteenth of June is a feat of storytelling and a sharp depiction of modern American family life. It delves into the tensions and allegiances of friendships, the murky uncertainty of early adulthood, and the yearning to belong. This remarkable novel offers a nod to James Joyce's celebrated classic, Ulysses, and it is about the secrets we keep and the lengths we’ll go to for acceptance and love.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781491523162
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio
  • Publication date: 6/28/2014
  • Format: CD
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 6.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Maya Lang is the first-generation daughter of Indian immigrants. She was awarded the 2012 Bread Loaf–Rona Jaffe Foundation Scholarship in Fiction and was a finalist for Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. She holds a PhD in comparative literature and lives in New York with her husband and daughter.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2014

    Great book!!! It's about three people who are all at some sort o

    Great book!!! It's about three people who are all at some sort of crossroads in their lives, and we see how the events of one day can illuminate their feelings and affect what they choose to do. Right from the beginning the three main characters are very three dimensional and don't just feel like stereotypes.There is a lot of emotion in the story and you can sympathize with what the characters are going through. Since it all takes place in one day the action moves pretty fast, but it is not like an episode of "24" or some other show where so many things happen that it is totally unrealistic. This book is totally real and the ending is satisfying but still leaves you thinking about the characters. I should also mention that I really loved the writing, which can be beautiful in one moment and make you laugh out loud in the next moment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2014

    The Sixteenth of June builds quietly, beautifully, and then¿-as

    The Sixteenth of June builds quietly, beautifully, and then—-as moving as any Joycean epiphany—-astonishes you. When I reached the last page, I felt deeply stirred, because although it pays tribute to Joyce's masterwork, Ulysses, it refuses to become simply a contemporary shadow of it. It's the author's brilliant insights into her characters' individual struggles that makes it compelling, not just its skillful allusiveness. Yes, it serves as a sort of conversation with Joyce's work, but a conversation in which not all sides always agree. One of the epigraphs to the book is a quotation from Virginia Woolf's diary where she gives a fabulously scathing critique of Ulysses. As this novel comes to a close, like Woolf's Mrs.Dalloway, we enter a long, exquisitely conceived party montage (calling it a scene, doesn't do it justice). As epiphanies spark in the characters' minds, I sensed the novel was as much a tribute to Woolf as to Joyce. Woolf's voice, I think, is a significant part, perhaps an essential part, of this conversation too. By the end, that voice, in the final pages, gets heard, and for me, it was truly magical.

    I highly recommend this book, if you have an affection for the Modernists and like to explore the quiet depths of human experience.

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