The Last Romantics: A Novel
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Description

"A richly observed novel, both ambitious and welcoming." — Meg Wolitzer

THE BARNES & NOBLE BOOK CLUB PICK FOR FEBRUARY

AN AMAZON BEST OF THE MONTH, FICTION & LITERATURE

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF FEBRUARY BY:

Goodreads • Lithub • Refinery29 • InStyle • HelloGiggles • Real Simple • Parade • PureWow • Apple Books • Bustle

"It is the strength and fragility of the siblings' bond, the evolving nature of love that is at the core of Conklin's novel....Gracefully rendered, The Last Romantics focuses on the familiar theme of family with great originality." — Washington Post

When the renowned poet Fiona Skinner is asked about the inspiration behind her iconic work, The Love Poem, she tells her audience a story about her family and a betrayal that reverberates through time.

It begins in a big yellow house with a funeral, an iron poker, and a brief variation forever known as the Pause: a free and feral summer in a middle-class Connecticut town. Caught between the predictable life they once led and an uncertain future that stretches before them, the Skinner siblings—fierce Renee, sensitive Caroline, golden boy Joe and watchful Fiona—emerge from the Pause staunchly loyal and deeply connected. Two decades later, the siblings find themselves once again confronted with a family crisis that tests the strength of these bonds and forces them to question the life choices they've made and ask what, exactly, they will do for love.

A sweeping yet intimate epic about one American family, The Last Romantics is an unforgettable exploration of the ties that bind us together, the responsibilities we embrace and the duties we resent, and how we can lose—and sometimes rescue—the ones we love. A novel that pierces the heart and lingers in the mind, it is also a beautiful meditation on the power of stories—how they navigate us through difficult times, help us understand the past, and point the way toward our future.

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Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
02/05/2019
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780062358226
ASIN:
B072F14LGX
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Date Added:
Jan 31, 2019 17:04:19
Date Updated:
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shortDescription

"A richly observed novel, both ambitious and welcoming." — Meg Wolitzer

THE BARNES & NOBLE BOOK CLUB PICK FOR FEBRUARY

AN AMAZON BEST OF THE MONTH, FICTION & LITERATURE

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF FEBRUARY BY:

Goodreads • Lithub • Refinery29 • InStyle • HelloGiggles • Real Simple • Parade • PureWow • Apple Books • Bustle

"It is the strength and fragility of the siblings' bond, the evolving nature of love that is at the core of Conklin's novel....Gracefully rendered, The Last Romantics focuses on the familiar theme of family with great originality." — Washington Post

When the renowned poet Fiona Skinner is asked about the inspiration behind her iconic work, The Love Poem, she tells her audience a story about her family and a betrayal that reverberates through time.

It begins in a big yellow house with a funeral, an iron poker, and a brief variation...

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The Last Romantics
fullDescription

"A richly observed novel, both ambitious and welcoming." — Meg Wolitzer

THE BARNES & NOBLE BOOK CLUB PICK FOR FEBRUARY

AN AMAZON BEST OF THE MONTH, FICTION & LITERATURE

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF FEBRUARY BY:

Goodreads • Lithub • Refinery29 • InStyle • HelloGiggles • Real Simple • Parade • PureWow • Apple Books • Bustle

"It is the strength and fragility of the siblings' bond, the evolving nature of love that is at the core of Conklin's novel....Gracefully rendered, The Last Romantics focuses on the familiar theme of family with great originality." — Washington Post

When the renowned poet Fiona Skinner is asked about the inspiration behind her iconic work, The Love Poem, she tells her audience a story about her family and a betrayal that reverberates through time.

It begins in a big yellow house with a funeral, an iron poker, and a brief variation forever known as the Pause: a free and feral summer in a middle-class Connecticut town. Caught between the predictable life they once led and an uncertain future that stretches before them, the Skinner siblings—fierce Renee, sensitive Caroline, golden boy Joe and watchful Fiona—emerge from the Pause staunchly loyal and deeply connected. Two decades later, the siblings find themselves once again confronted with a family crisis that tests the strength of these bonds and forces them to question the life choices they've made and ask what, exactly, they will do for love.

A sweeping yet intimate epic about one American family, The Last Romantics is an unforgettable exploration of the ties that bind us together, the responsibilities we embrace and the duties we resent, and how we can lose—and sometimes rescue—the ones we love. A novel that pierces the heart and lingers in the mind, it is also a beautiful meditation on the power of stories—how they navigate us through difficult times, help us understand the past, and point the way toward our future.

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Last Romantics A Novel
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reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Meg Wolitzer
      • content: "Tara Conklin is a generous writer who deftly brings us into the world of this fictional family, an engrossing and vivid place where I was happy to stay. The Last Romantics is a richly observed novel, both ambitious and welcoming."
      • premium: False
      • source: USA Today (four stars)
      • content: "Conklin examines her characters' lives with generosity and an unflinching eye for the complexities of love and family.... Fans of Jonathan Franzen's The Corrections will find similar pleasures in the intelligence and empathy on display here."
      • premium: False
      • source: Washington Post
      • content: "It is the strength and fragility of the siblings' bond, the evolving nature of love that is at the core of Conklin's novel....Gracefully rendered, The Last Romantics focuses on the familiar theme of family with great originality."
      • premium: False
      • source: Stefanie Hargreaves, Shelf Awareness Galley Love of the Week
      • content: "An intimate, soul-searing examination of a modern family and the ties that bind, for better or worse."
      • premium: False
      • source: Shanina Piyarali, Shelf Awareness
      • content: "Intensely moving."
      • premium: False
      • source: Berkshire Eagle
      • content: "An absorbing and redemptive novel of grace, craft and heroic characters."
      • premium: False
      • source: Kevin Wilson, author of The Family Fang
      • content: "A triumph of storytelling, an ambitious examination of the failures of love and how we, against all odds, find a way to survive.... A complex, resonant work that will reshape your understanding of family."
      • premium: False
      • source: Laurie Frankel, New York Times bestselling author of This Is How It Always Is
      • content: "All of the luxuriously spun characters in The Last Romantics, entwined via that impossible web we call family, unfold over their many years with the perfect balance of familiarity and wonder that makes turning their pages such a pleasure."
      • premium: False
      • source: Lisa Gabriele, author of The Winters
      • content: "There's so much love and loss in this book that I read it with a box of tissues, laughing with astonishment through the tears. The kind of book you lose yourself in."
      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        September 1, 2018

        When asked about the inspiration for a celebrated work, poet Fiona Skinner reveals a story of siblings who bonded after a family funeral during a freewheeling summer they called the Pause. Two decades later, betrayal shredded those ties. Conklin came blastingly to our attention when she debuted with the New York Times best-selling The House Girl; with a 200,000-copy first printing.

        Copyright 2018 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        November 5, 2018
        The accomplished second novel by the author of The House Girl throws a few unexpected twists into the well-worn story of evolving relationships among siblings. In the year 2079, 102-year-old poet Fiona Skinner looks back on a childhood marked by the sudden death of her father and the emotional withdrawal of her mother. During the years that her mother spent almost entirely in her room in their middle-class Connecticut neighborhood—a period that Fiona and her three siblings call the Pause—the siblings essentially raised each other, with observant, dreamy youngest child Fiona taking note of driven oldest daughter Renee, bubbly Caroline, and sweet, athletic Joe. As the years go on, the increasingly troubled Joe becomes the focus of both the novel and the attention of the other siblings. While Fiona—who works at a nonprofit and publishes a blog, sardonically titled The Last Romantic, wryly detailing her sexual experiences with one man after another—is the novel’s key voice, it expands out to peek into the minds of the others, including the mother who becomes a staunch feminist after emerging from her cocoon. Conklin’s plot avoids the predictable, and adds a new mystery each time an old one is solved, resulting in a clever novel.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        November 15, 2018
        From the vantage point of a future ravaged by global warming, Conklin's (The House Girl, 2013) narrator describes the lingering consequences of the traumatic childhood she shared with her three siblings.In 2079, when the world is increasingly devastated by floods and other climate disasters, renowned 102-year-old poet Fiona Skinner meets a young woman whose parents named her Luna after a woman mentioned in Fiona's world-famous work, "The Love Poem," written 75 years earlier. To answer the young woman's questions about the original Luna, Fiona tells the story of her childhood: After their father dies suddenly in 1981 and their mother, Noni, retreats to her bedroom in paralyzing depression, 4-year-old Fiona, 7-year-old Joe, 8-year-old Caroline, and 11-year-old Renee must fend for themselves for several years in what they call "the Pause" until Noni eventually reclaims her parental responsibility. The Pause creates a powerful bond among the children but affects each differently. Renee carries her take-charge sense of responsibility into a high-powered medical career but avoids having children of her own. Despite the disapproval of Noni, who has become wary of men and dependent womanhood, Caroline marries early and creates a perfect domestic world for her professor husband and their children without considering what world she wants for herself. Coddled, slightly clueless Fiona takes a mindless job at a nonprofit called ClimateSenseNow! (hint, hint) and writes a blog recounting each of her sexual experiences in numerical order. Passionately protective of his sisters, Joe is perhaps the most damaged. Despite early promise, his life skitters off the rails, redeemed only briefly by his love affair with the young bartender Luna before he suffers what Fiona calls his "accident." In reaction, the sisters re-examine their own priorities. A problem, especially in scenes involving Joe, is that Conklin sometimes describes private thoughts and feelings Fiona could not know, although according to the novel's framing device she is recounting her own memory of events.Basically a lukewarm turn-of-the-21st-century family melodrama despite the intermittent, never adequately integrated references to a future wracked by climate change.

        COPYRIGHT(2018) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

subtitle
A Novel
popularity
22657
publisher
HarperCollins
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