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Cover for Music for Torching

Music for Torching

A M. Homes


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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (12/31/2014)


A tour de force: A. M. Homes's unforgettable New Yorker story unfolds into a fiercely entertaining novel of marriage, family, and the American dream.

In a tale that unfolds over the course of one week at the beginning of summer, A. M. Homes lays bare the foundations of marriage and family life at the end of the century—the American Dream gone dry. Flash frozen in the anxious entropy of suburban subdivision, Paul and Elaine (the couple featured in Homes's acclaimed first collection of stories, The Safety of Objects) have two boys and are obsessed with "making things good again." Alone--together--they spin the quiet terrors of family life into a fantastical frenzy that careens out of control: a Stepford-wife neighbor, an ill-conceived plan for a tattoo, a sexy town cop who shows up at all the wrong moments, an allergy-relief cleanup team in space suits, a hoard of contractors and repairmen, a mistress calling on the cell phone, and a hostage situation at the boys' school. With characters so flawed and outrageous they are entirely believable, Music for Torching is a surreal vision of a most familiar landscape.

Harper Perennial, 9780688177621, 368pp.

Publication Date: April 5, 2000

About the Author

A.M. Homes is the author of the novels The End of Alice, In a Country of Mothers, and Jack, as well as the short-story collection The Safety of Objects and the artist's book Appendix A. Her fiction has been translated into eight languages, and she is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National endowment for the Arts Fellowship. Her fiction and nonfiction appear in magazines such as The New Yorker and Artforum, among others, and she is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, Mirabella, Bomb, Blind Spot, and Story. She teaches in the writing programs at Columbia University and The New School and lives in New York City.