Lucinella

Lucinella

by Lore Segal

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Overview

Intelligence turns me on.

Lore Segal's tour de force look at the New York literary scene was a hit when it was first released in the 1970s, winning the praise of the literary elite. John Garnder called it “magical.” William Gass said it was “witty, elegant, beautiful.” Stanley Elkin called it “a shamelessly wonderful novel, so flawless one feels civilized reading it.”

It's been a cult classic ever since, and appears here in its full, original text, as fresh as ever: the story of the whimsical New York poet Lucinella and her adventures among the literati. It starts at Yaddo writers colony, where life is idyllic, meals are served to you in your rooms, and cocktails are ready at day's end … and still the writers complain and compete. Then it moves back to New York City, where the pampered once again face reality, and wonder: Will a different husband … or the right publisher … or the perfect filing system … put life in order?

Lucinella and her circle feel lacking and keep looking, busily going to parties and watching one another 's lives closely for signs of happiness, love and despair.
Segal depicts it all with a perfect blend of love and malice. And at the center is Lucinella herself, so full of humanity and frailty that these divertissements do her to death. “Here,” as Cynthia Ozick says, “is the enchanted microcosm, the laughter of mortality.”

The Contemporary Art of the Novella series is designed to highlight work by major authors from around the world. In most instances, as with Imre Kertész, it showcases work never before published; in others, books are reprised that should never have gone out of print. It is intended that the series feature many well-known authors and some exciting new discoveries. And as with the original series, The Art of the Novella, each book is a beautifully packaged and inexpensive volume meant to celebrate the form and its practitioners.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781612192581
Publisher: Melville House Publishing
Publication date: 11/06/2012
Series: Contemporary Art of the Novella Series
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 160
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Lore Segal was born in Vienna, Austria in 1928. Her father was an accountant in a bank, but as a Jew was fired when the Nazis came to power in 1938. With the rise of violent anti-Semitism in Vienna, Segal's parents sent her to England as part of the Kindertransport children's rescue mission. But, while living in a series of foster homes, the ten-year old girl conducted a campaign of such vigorous letter-writing to British authorities that her parents were eventually allowed to join her. Her father, however, died just before the end of the war. Supported by her mother working as a cook, Segal managed to graduate from the University of London, and in 1951 emigrated to the United States. She held a variety of jobs–in a shoe factory, as a receptionist, teaching English–while writing stories that she soon began selling to major magazines. In 1964, to great acclaim, she published Other People's Houses, a novel based on her refugee experience as a child, which had been serialized in the New Yorker. Meanwhile, in 1961, she had married David Segal, who became an editor at Knopf. He died in 1970. For her two children, Segal began to write and translate children's books, including an award-winning collection of Grimm's fairy tales with illustrator Maurice Sendak. She returned to adult fiction in 1976 with her novella Lucinella. Segal has since taught at universities, including Columbia and Princeton, and won numerous writing prizes, including an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters for her 1985 novel Her First American. Her most recent book, the 2007 story collection Shakespeare's Kitchen, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Lore Segal lives in New York City.

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