- Motherless Brooklyn
Motherless Brooklyn Author(s) Jonathan Lethem Country United States Language English Genre(s) Detective novel Publisher Doubleday Publication date 1999 Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback) ISBN 0-385-49183-2 OCLC Number 40723751 Dewey Decimal 813/.54 21 LC Classification PS3562.E8544 M68 1999 Preceded by Girl in Landscape Followed by Kafka Americana
Motherless Brooklyn is a Jonathan Lethem detective story set in Brooklyn and published in 1999. Lethem's protagonist, Lionel Essrog, has Tourette syndrome, a disorder marked by involuntary tics. Essrog works, along with Tony, Danny and Gilbert, who call themselves the Minna Men, for Frank Minna—a small-time neighborhood owner of a "seedy and makeshift" detective agency—who is stabbed to death.
Under the guise of a detective novel, Lethem has written a more piercing tale of investigation, one revealing how the mind drives on its own "wheels within wheels." Unlike the stock detective novel it shadows, the thriller in which clarity emerges on the final page, Motherless Brooklyn immerses us in the mind's dense thicket, a place where words split and twine in an ever-deepening tangle.
Motherless Brooklyn has a few problems -- including some cartoonlike stock characters and one scene near the end that flirts with maudlin sentimentality—but it works far better than the average hip postmodern novel in terms of sheer emotional impact. Because Lethem never lets the metaphorical and linguistic possibilities of his narrator's illness overshadow his immensely appealing humanity, we really care about Lionel and his search for his mentor's killer.
- ^ a b Krist, Gary (September 23, 1999). "Jonathan Lethem: Motherless Brooklyn". Salon.com. http://www.salon.com/books/review/1999/09/23/lethem/index.html. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
- ^ "All Past National Book Critics Circle Award Winners and Finalists - Page 2". National Book Critics Circle. http://bookcritics.org/awards/past_awards/page_2/. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
- ^ "The CWA Dagger Awards". The Crime Writers' Association. October 27, 2008. http://www.thecwa.co.uk/daggers/index.html. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
- ^ Mobilio, Albert (October 17, 1999). "What Makes Him Tic?". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/1999/10/17/books/what-makes-him-tic.html. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
- ^ "Motherless Brooklyn". flixster.com. http://www.flixster.com/movie/motherless-brooklyn. Retrieved November 29, 2009.
- ^ Lea, Andy (June 8, 2008). "Hulk Star Ed's Incredible Hulk". Daily Star. http://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/view/40181/Hulk-star-Ed-s-Incredible-Sulk/. Retrieved November 29, 3009.
- Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem, reviewed by Ted Gioia (Postmodern Mystery)
- The film version of Motherless Brooklyn at the Internet Movie Database
Novels Collections Non-fictionBelieveniks!: 2005: The Year We Wrote a Book About the Mets · The Disappointment Artist Comics Co-authors Gold Dagger Award 1955–1959 1960–1969
The Night of Wenceslas by Lionel Davidson (1960) · The Spoilt Kill by Mary Kelly (1961) · When I Grow Rich by Joan Fleming (1962) · The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré (1963) · The Perfect Murder by H. R. F. Keating (1964) · The Far Side of the Dollar by Ross Macdonald (1965) · A Long Way to Shiloh by Lionel Davidson (1966) · Murder Against the Grain by Emma Lathen (1967) · Skin Deep by Peter Dickinson (1968) · A Pride of Heroes by Peter Dickinson (1969)
Young Man I Think You're Dying by Joan Fleming (1970) · The Steam Pig by James H. McClure (1971) · The Levanter by Eric Ambler (1972) · The Defection of A. J. Lewinter by Robert Littell (1973) · Other Paths to Glory by Anthony Price (1974) · The Seven-Per-Cent Solution by Nicholas Meyer (1975) · A Demon in My View by Ruth Rendell (1976) · The Honourable Schoolboy by John le Carré (1977) · The Chelsea Murders by Lionel Davidson (1978) · Whip Hand by Dick Francis (1979)
The Murder of the Maharaja by H. R. F. Keating (1980) · Gorky Park by Martin Cruz Smith (1981) · The False Inspector Dew by Peter Lovesey (1982) · Accidental Crimes by John Hutton (1983) · The Twelfth Juror by B. M. Gill (1984) · Monkey Puzzle by Paula Gosling (1985) · Live Flesh by Ruth Rendell (1986) · A Fatal Inversion by Barbara Vine (1987) · Ratking by Michael Dibdin (1988) · The Wench is Dead by Colin Dexter (1989)
Bones and Silence by Reginald Hill (1990) · King Solomon's Carpet by Barbara Vine (1991) · The Way Through the Woods by Colin Dexter (1992) · Cruel and Unusual by Patricia Cornwell (1993) · The Scold's Bridle by Minette Walters (1994) · The Mermaids Singing by Val McDermid (1995) · Popcorn by Ben Elton (1996) · Black and Blue by Ian Rankin (1997) · Sunset Limited by James Lee Burke (1998) · A Small Death in Lisbon by Robert Wilson (1999)
Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem (2000) · Sidetracked by Henning Mankell (2001) · The Athenian Murders by José Carlos Somoza (2002) · Fox Evil by Minette Walters (2003) · Blacklist by Sara Paretsky (2004) · Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indriðason (2005) · Raven Black by Ann Cleeves (2006) · The Broken Shore by Peter Temple (2007) · Blood from Stone by Frances Fyfield (2008) · A Whispered Name by William Brodrick (2009)
Blacklands by Belinda Bauer (2010)
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