Wonderland (Paperback)

By Stacey D'Erasmo

Mariner Books, 9780544483897, 256pp.

Publication Date: May 5, 2015

List Price: 14.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.

May 2014 Indie Next List

“With a voice as raw and lively as an amplifier crackling to life, Wonderland's Anna Brundage is the perfect rock-and-roll narrator. D'Erasmo explodes the tropes of coming-of-age stories, presenting a woman coming into her own at 44, seven years after her spectacular rise and fall on the indie scene. Back with a new band, a new album, and one last chance to make it as a musician, Anna's journey is a wonderful meditation on music, the creative spirit, and the highs and lows of an unconventional life.”
— Josh Christie, Sherman's Books & Stationery, Freeport, ME
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Description

An NPR Best Book of 2014
A Time Top Ten Fiction Book of 2014
A New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice
A BBC Top Ten Book of 2014

"Exquisite...As inspiring in its way as Patti Smith's memoir Just Kids."
Los Angeles Times
 
“Briskly addictive . . . Told in the voice of a female rock Ulysses.” —O, the Oprah Magazine
 
“Marvelous . . . D’Erasmo conjures up the seedy, sexy spectacle of life on the road with amazing vividness, and fills in the inner life of a woman who has one last chance to get her voice heard.” —Lev Grossman, Time

 
Anna Brundage is a rock star. She was an overnight indie sensation, but lost her fame just as fast as she found it. Now forty-four, she pours everything into a comeback, selling her famous father’s art to finance an album and a European tour. A riveting look at the life of a musician and the moving story of a woman’s unconventional path, Wonderland is a glimpse of how it feels when a wish just might come true.
 
“Anna made me think of Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine, mixed with a little bit of Janis.” — Paste
 
“Richly interior . . . What makes Anna such a powerful narrator is her seductive desire to keep her options open.” — Washington Post


About the Author

STACEY D’ERASMO is a recipient of Guggenheim and Stegner Fellowships, the author of three previous novels and a book of nonfiction, The Art of Intimacy. Her work has also appeared in The New York Times (Magazine and Book Review), Bookforum, and Ploughshares, among others. She teaches in Columbia University's MFA program.



Praise For Wonderland

“Breakout.” — Vogue

“Ingeniously conceived and believable . . . D’Erasmo is a gifted and skillful writer.” — Lionel Shriver, New York Times Book Review

“Her story reads like an unusually lucid travel journal . . . In Brundage, D’Erasmo has created a wry, questioning, sensual artist.” — The New Yorker

“D’Erasmo’s writing exhibits a life-and-death intimacy that grabs at us.” — USA Today

“Stacey D’Erasmo’s exquisite Wonderland . . . succeeds, not through bombast but with beautifully measured, understated writing and meticulous characterization . . . Wonderland’s narrator, Anna Brundage, is so beautifully realized that I wanted to download her music on iTunes . . . a striking evocation of the artist’s quest” — Elizabeth Hand, Los Angeles Times

“Dreamy . . . [with] finely tuned prose . . . Given the book’s sensual imagery and magnetic heroine, it’s hard not to wonder what Anna would sound like — I pegged her as some combination of Björk, Florence and the Machine, and Janis Joplin.” — Mother Jones

“[A] questing, questioning, melodic narrative . . . Sentence by sentence, Stacey D’Erasmo is a gorgeous writer . . . [with] a vibrant, idiosyncratic voice.” — Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Briskly addictive . . . Some sentences dance like wind chimes in a hurricane; others evanesce . . . D’Erasmo expertly conjures the seductive uncharted space that lures the sculptor, the musician.” — O, The Oprah Magazine

“Heartbreakingly intense . . . [a] dramatically satisfying, philosophically complex novel.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“The prose constantly achieves the magic trick of seeming both weightless and grounded . . . an evocative exploration of universal themes: the anxieties of middle age, the bittersweet freedom of the creative life, the burden of the legacy a daughter inherits from her father.” — BookForum

“D’Erasmo gives us an inside look at a world most of us will never experience. As Anna strives for perfection in her music, you get the feeling she might just make it.” — The Oklahoman

“The world of Wonderland is authentic, vibrant, and genuine. Stacey D’Erasmo explores the delight and terror of second chances. A great read!” — Michael Stipe

Wonderland is a witty and unflinching novel about life, love, art and sound checks. A deep howl and a bittersweet song, this is D’Erasmo’s best yet.” — Sam Lipsyte, author of The Ask, Home Land, and others

“There’s a lot in this book that those of us who’ve lived the music life will recognize: the eroticized grind of life on the road; the hothouse environment of the recording studio; the weird state of in-between that defines provisional rock and roll fame. But what’s best about Wonderland is its portrait of a creative spirit. When Anna Brundage is in the zone, she pulls songs from the air; she showers her fans and collaborators in pain and beauty. Wonderland’s insight into how a woman inhabits, feeds, and sometimes undoes her own artistry is rare and profound.” — Ann Powers, music critic, coauthor of Piece by Piece (with Tori Amos), and author of Weird Like Us: My Bohemian America

“Like Anna, her unforgettable narrator, Stacey D’Erasmo has found a new sound here: a voice so gorgeous and raw that it captures what it means to be human. D’Erasmo’s prose is lyrical and alive — this is a vital, powerful novel — and Wonderland will strike a chord with anyone who’s ever dreamed of getting a second chance.” — Elliott Holt, author of You Are One of Them

“As Robert Mapplethorpe told Patti Smith, this one, Wonderland has the magic.” — Washington Independent Review of Books

“[D’Erasmo] combines the delightful worlds of literature and music while bringing out the best in both mediums . . . a rich and exquisitely crafted novel.” — Lambda Literary Foundation

“[Wonderland] delicately melts together a captivating story, artistic language and meaningful imagery.” — NeuralPop

“A cool, dreamy read, by turns drug-fueled, anxious, touched by grief, blistering with the heat of survival instinct . . . delicious.” — Black Heart

“A must-read for any up and coming artist to grizzled veteran.” — Femmusic

“[D’Erasmo writes] artfully and insightfully, giving Brundage a no-nonsense, road-worn tone that leaves equal room for pathos and humor . . . D’Erasmo is particularly good at capturing the randomness and joy of the creative process [and] thoughtfully addresses aging, art and relationships.” — Kirkus Reviews

“A spellbinding look into the protagonist’s being . . . meticulously crafted . . . Days and shows pass, but within this routine, a transformation slowly creeps into the narrative: that of commitment, and, perhaps, hope for the future.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Anna is an irresistible narrator. D’Erasmo brings us inside the music and the musician’s psyche in this transfixing song of a self evolving through discovery, loss, and renewal.” — Booklist, starred review