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The Immortalists
2018
Availability
Fiction/Biography Profile
Characters
Simon (Male), Golden-boy; leaves for California to find love;
Klara (Female), Becomes a magician;
Daniel (Male), Doctor,
Varya (Female), Bookish; researches longevity research
Genre
Coming of age
Fiction
Literary
Thriller
Science fiction
Topics
Love
Magicians
Belief and doubt
Psychics
Family
Setting
New York - Mid-Atlantic States (U.S.)
California - West (U.S.)
Time Period
1969 -- 20th century
1980's -- 20th century
Large Cover Image
Trade Reviews

  Publishers Weekly Review

In her second novel, Benjamin (The Anatomy of Dreams) constructs an imaginative and satisfying family saga. In 1969, the four rambunctious Gold children, Simon, Klara, Daniel, and Varya, visit a psychic on Manhattan's Lower East Side who predicts the date each of them will die. The novel then follows how the siblings deal with news of their expiration dates. In the late '70s, Klara and Simon, the youngest, run off to San Francisco, where the closeted Simon becomes a dancer and Klara a magician and stage illusionist who believes she can commune with the spirits of dead relatives. In 2006, Daniel, a married army doctor based in Kingston, N.Y., learns that the psychic who foretold their fates is a con artist wanted by the FBI, and attempts to track her down. In 2010, Varya, the eldest Gold, is a longevity researcher who feels closest to the rhesus monkeys she uses for her experiments. But one day, a journalist named Luke interviews her and, in the process, changes the course of her life. The author has written a cleverly structured novel steeped in Jewish lore and the history of four decades of American life. The four Gold siblings are wonderful creations, and in Benjamin's expert hands their story becomes a moving meditation on fate, faith, and the family ties that alternately hurt and heal. Agent: Margaret Riley King, WME Entertainment. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Summary
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER<br> <br> "A captivating family saga."-- New York Times Book Review <br> <br> "This literary family saga is perfect for fans of Celeste Ng and Donna Tartt."-- People Magazine (Book of the Week) <br> <br> "A sprawling, enchanting family saga."-- Entertainment Weekly (The Must List) <br> <br> A dazzling family love story reminiscent of Everything I Never Told You from a novelist heralded by Lorrie Moore as a "great new talent." <br> <br> If you knew the date of your death, how would you live your life? <br> <br> It's 1969 in New York City's Lower East Side, and word has spread of the arrival of a mystical woman, a traveling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the day they will die. The Gold children--four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness--sneak out to hear their fortunes.<br> <br> The prophecies inform their next five decades. Golden-boy Simon escapes to the West Coast, searching for love in '80s San Francisco; dreamy Klara becomes a Las Vegas magician, obsessed with blurring reality and fantasy; eldest son Daniel seeks security as an army doctor post-9/11; and bookish Varya throws herself into longevity research, where she tests the boundary between science and immortality.<br> <br> A sweeping novel of remarkable ambition and depth, The Immortalists probes the line between destiny and choice, reality and illusion, this world and the next. It is a deeply moving testament to the power of story, the nature of belief, and the unrelenting pull of familial bonds.
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