Girish Mahajan (Editor)

Memoir From Antproof Case

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Country  United States
Genre  Fiction novel
Pages  514 pp.
Author  Mark Helprin
Followed by  A City in Winter (1996)

Language  English
Publication date  April 1995
Originally published  April 1995
Publisher  Harcourt
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Media type  Print, e-book, audiobook
Preceded by  A Soldier of the Great War (1991)
Similar  A Soldier of the Great War, Freddy and Fredericka, Ellis Island and Other Stories, In Sunlight and in Shadow, A dove of the East - and other

Memoir From Antproof Case is a book by American writer Mark Helprin. The novel was initially published in April 1995.

Contents

Plot

An elderly narrator who never reveals his real name writes a manuscript in the Brazilian jungles and hides it, page by page, in a termite-proof suitcase. The goal that he set for himself is truly ambitious: to tell his son about the things that led him to Brazil—after a childhood spent in New York City, and youth—in an elite Swiss clinic for the mentally ill, after studying at Harvard, after his service as a pilot during World War II, after decades of a successful career at a major Wall Street bank, after a number of impossible escapades, and a great love...

Review

Never one to tell a lean story, Helprin indulges in dozens of riffs and digressions exploring the principles of physics, anatomy, education, morality, monetary theory, aeronautics, engineering and many other subjects. Some of these descriptions are little short of gorgeous; others are tedious. Similarly, Helprin's witty, ironic humor sometimes veers into farce (e.g., a banquet scene where bank officers are served steak and the narrator, in disgrace, must eat a turkey anus). To his credit, Helprin is endlessly inventive, and one expects his characters to behave as they do in fairy tales and fables, not in real life. Yet real life pulses so strongly in some scenes (especially the account of the events surrounding the death of the narrator's parents) that they could stand as set pieces, full and complete in their stark and immediate impact. For all of its excesses, there is enough magic in this story to keep readers actively engaged.

Publishers Weekly

References

Memoir From Antproof Case Wikipedia


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