Public Burning

Public Burning

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

The Public Burning reimagines the three fateful days in 1953 that culminated with the execution of alleged atomic spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. Vice President Richard Nixon—the voraciously ambitious bad boy of the Eisenhower regime—is the dominant narrator in an enormous cast that includes Betty Crocker, Joe McCarthy, the Marx Brothers, Walter Winchell, Uncle Sam, his adversary The Phantom, and Time magazine incarnated as the National Poet Laureate.
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John's Wife

John's Wife

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

A satirical fable of small-town America centers on a builder's wife and the erotic power she exerts over her neighbors, transforming before their eyes and changing forever their notions of right and wrong.
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Briar Rose & Spanking the Maid

Briar Rose & Spanking the Maid

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

These two novellas by the groundbreaking, fearless, and immeasurably influential Robert Coover are dirty, funny and brilliant. In Briar Rose a sleeping beauty is trapped in an enchantment for a hundred years, dreaming of stories in which someone like her wakes up disappointed, or becomes a mother, or is stripped and defiled. And, as she dreams, outside, failed princes die and hang their remains on the thorns of a briar hedge. In Spanking the Maid a maid and her master are each committed to their own hard service: she, attempting to perform her simple duties without error; he, supplying punishment by rod, belt, hairbrush, whip, cane and slipper when she inevitably fails. These tales of desire are Coover at his most darkly playful.
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Going For a Beer

Going For a Beer

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

A collection of the best short fictions from the grandmaster of postmodernism.Robert Coover has been playing by his own rules for more than half a century, earning the 1987 Rea Award for the Short Story as "a writer who has managed, willfully and even perversely, to remain his own man while offering his generous vision and versions of America." Coover finds inspiration in everything from painting, cinema, theater, and dance to slapstick, magic acts, puzzles, and riddles. His 1969 story, "The Babysitter," has alone inspired generations of innovative young writers. Here, in this selection of thirty of his best stories, you will find an invisible man tragically obsessed by an invisible woman; a cartoon man in a cartoon car who runs over a real man who is arrested by a real policeman with cartoon eyes; a stick man who reinvents the universe. Going for a Beer confirms Coover's reputation as "one of America's greatest literary geniuses" (Alan Moore).
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(1991) Pinocchio in Venice

(1991) Pinocchio in Venice

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

Internationally renowned author Robert Coover returns with a major new novel set in Venice and featuring one of its most famous citizens, Pinocchio. The result is a brilliant philosophical discourse on what it means to be human; a hilarious, bawdy adventure; and a fitting tribute to the history, grandeur, and decay of Venice itself.
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Gerald's Party

Gerald's Party

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

Ros is dead. A bad actress but a tremendous lover, when she was alive her thighs pillowed cast members, crew, friends and acquaintances. Now Gerald's party continues around her murdered corpse (it is, after all, just the first of the night), as the guests indulge in drinking, flirting and jealousies, and the police make their brutal investigations.An evening of cocktails, sex and violence, Robert Coover's novel is a murder mystery as rousing and disorienting as the best drunken party, a vaudevillian masterpiece.
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The Cat in the Hat for President

The Cat in the Hat for President

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

"Robert Coover remains our foremost verbal wizard, our laughter in the dark." —T.C. Boyle Fifty years after the original release of Coover's satire, this rollicking fable of the grotesque, unhinged Cat in the Hat (and the stuffed shirts who bet on his success) makes for a bitterly funny indictment of politics-as-usual in 2017. As Robert Coover read Dr. Seuss to his children in 1968, he noticed "the little Cat in the Hat symbol on the front cover: 'I CAN READ IT ALL BY MYSELF.' It looked remarkably like a campaign button, and, by changing one letter, it was one." Sensing a strange affinity between the anarchic Seussian world and the riots, assassinations, warfare and social upheaval that forever marked 1968 as a year of turmoil, Coover began to write. With the slogan "I CAN LEAD IT ALL BY MYSELF," he imagines a hedonistic, novelty-crazed public and their shameless, nonsense-spewing, hat-wearing demagogue: the Cat in the Hat. While this mind-bending classic...
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Huck Out West

Huck Out West

Robert Coover

Literature & Fiction

Our leading postmodernist novelist turns his iconoclastic eye to a great American classic in this sequel to The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.At the end of Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn, on the eve of the Civil War, Huck and Tom Sawyer decide to escape "sivilization" and "light out for the Territory." In Robert Coover's Huck Out West, also "wrote by Huck," the boys do just that, riding for the famous but short-lived Pony Express, then working as scouts for both sides in the war.They are suddenly separated when Tom decides he'd rather own civilization than leave it, returning east with his new wife, Becky Thatcher, to learn the law from her father. Huck, abandoned and "dreadful lonely," hires himself out to "whosoever." He rides shotgun on coaches, wrangles horses on a Chisholm Trail cattle drive, joins a gang of bandits, guides wagon trains, gets dragged into U.S. Army massacres, suffers a series of romantic and barroom misadventures.He is eventually...
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