Antonia Lively Breaks the Silence: A Novel

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Algonquin Books, Jun 4, 2013 - Fiction - 320 pages
13 Reviews

Catherine Strayed is living a quiet, un?remarkable life in a secluded college town following the mysterious death of her husband, a promising writer whose death may have been an accident, a suicide, or perhaps even a murder. When her former mentor (and onetime lover)—a powerful critic who singlehandedly destroyed her late husband’s chance for success—takes a teaching job at the college, Catherine’s world threatens to collapse. For with him has come his latest protégé, an exotic young woman named Antonia Lively. Antonia’s debut novel has become a literary sensation—but it is, in fact, an almost factual retelling of ?a terrible crime that she relates without ?any concern for the impact its publication will have on the lives of those involved.
As Antonia insinuates herself into Catherine’s life, mysterious and frightening things start to happen, because unbeknownst to Catherine, the younger woman intends to plunder her own dark, regrettable past—and the unsolved death of her husband—for her next literary triumph.

Provocative and cunning, Antonia Lively Breaks the Silence asserts that fiction is never truly fictional and asks, What does stealing another’s life do to your soul? Levinson spins a tale of surprises, peeling back one revelation only to find another in this tightly wrought, wickedly cynical look at the worlds of academia, publishing, and celebrity.


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User Review  - cindyst2000 - LibraryThing

I thought this sounded really interesting but I had a hard time even finishing it. The characters were superficially described and unlikeable. I could not get emotionally involved at all with the story. Read full review

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User Review  - thereaderscommute - LibraryThing

I loved the premise of this book. I've always been a huge fan of books about writers. It's sort of thrilling, knowing that the writing life can be dramatic and interesting, right? However, while I ... Read full review

Selected pages


In Medias Res
Part One The King and Queen of Letters
Part Two After the King Died the Queen Died of Grief

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About the author (2013)

David Samuel Levinson is the author of a story collection, Most of Us Are Here Against Our Will. His stories have appeared as well in Prairie Schooner, West Branch, and the Brooklyn Review, among others. He lives in New York City. This is his first novel. 

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