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New York Times Book Review"One of our most prodigiously talented and magical writers, [Crodescu] manages to be brilliant and insightful, tough and seductive about American culture."
—New York Times Book Review
Picture Wakefield: He's divorced, lives alone in a comfortable, book-filled apartment in a sophisticated city. A motivational speaker, ...
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Picture Wakefield: He's divorced, lives alone in a comfortable, book-filled apartment in a sophisticated city. A motivational speaker, his talks leave audiences dispirited and anxious. But for this peculiar talent, he's nicely paid by corporate America, and he's in demand. Then one day the Devil shows up, walks right into Wakefield's tasteful living room, and says, "Time's up."
Just as literary Fausts have done for centuries, Wakefield makes a bargain with Satan, who as it turns out, is having his own existential crisis due to bureaucratic headaches and younger upstart demons in the afterworld. The Devil gives Wakefield a year to find an authentic life—or else it's curtains. So Wakefield travels across the country meeting New Age gurus, billionaire techno-geeks, global pioneers, gambling addicts and models who look like heroin addicts, venture capitalists, art collectors, rainforest protectors, and S and M strippers.
Andrei Codrescu brings his unique vision to the American character: our desire to change, renovate, and improve both our inner and outer worlds; to remodel not only our buildings but our bodies and minds.
Wakefield is an inspired novel—part metaphysical mystery, part travel adventure, part architectural romp—by turns funny and deadly serious.
Posted August 31, 2004
'Get a life!' That's an oft used phrase, and precisely what the Devil orders motivational speaker Wakefield to do. Actually, Wakefield has no choice - this isn't an order, it's an ultimatum. 'Time's up,' says Satan, so find yourself a real life or sign off on living. Little choice here, so Wakefield goes in an often hilarious trek across the country trying to make contact with who he's supposed to be and where he's supposed to be. He has a year in which to accomplish this (remember what happens to those who make bargains with the devil). Along the way he runs into every kind of outre character, the strangest phenomenons in our contemporary society, and a few women. Of course, Wakefield pontificates along the way. Thanks to the experienced voice and understanding of Jeff Woodman what could have been a farcical reading is instead 10 hours of pleasure. Satire is sometimes difficult to deliver - Woodman's totally in control. - Gail Cooke
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Posted March 18, 2010
Maybe Andrei Codrescu is liked by many people, undoubtedly he is because he has a number of books out.
However, I only was able to read about half of this book and put it down. I am a person who hardly ever puts a book down, as I will garind my way through most of them, but this one went down.
Don't know what others see in it, but as for me, forget it.
Sorry about that.
J. Robert Ewbank author "John Wesley, Natural Man, and the 'Isms'"
Posted June 1, 2010
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