Laura Warholic, Or, The Sexual Intellectual: A Novel

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Fantagraphics, 2007 - Fiction - 878 pages
1 Review
A brilliant satire from one of the great novelists of his time.

In his first novel in nearly twenty years, Alexander Theroux, National Book Award Nominee, returns with a compendious satire, a bold and inquisitorial circuit-breaking examination of love and hate, of rejection and forgiveness, of trust and romantic disappointment, of the terrors of contemporary life. Eugene Eyestones, an erudite sex columnist for a Boston cultural magazine, becomes enmeshed in the messy life of a would-be artist named Laura Warholic, who, repulsing and fascinating him at the same time, becomes a mirror in which he not only sees himself but through which he is forced to face his own demons. Not only does she inadvertently supply him with material for his columns, but she exemplifies all that Eugene considers wrong with contemporary America (of which the publishing profession and its recognizable denizens serves as a microcosm)a garish and dunce-filled Babylon that Theroux scorches with inventive and relentless satire. Nostalgic for the old days and old manners, a way of life lost to grace, loving from afar a mysterious beauty named Rapunzel Wisht, Eugene fights against the rising tide of stupidity, focusing on Laura in the hope that by saving her he can validate his ethical beliefs. But feckless Laura and the colorful but bizarre cast of characters surrounding Eugenebrilliant bigots, nihilists, Generation-X slackers and zanies of all sexual persuasionsthreaten to pull him under, leading to the novel's unforgettable conclusion, a climax of betrayal and redemption of Dostoevskyan power.

As in all of Theroux's works, his maximalist and pyrotechnic prose style and searching intellect are the chief attractions, capable of outrageous comedy, nuanced philosophical discussions, winsome love scenes, flame-throwing tirades, subtle theological musings, and an unflinching genius for a profound if merciless look at the human condition. Horrifying and hilarious, damning and demanding, Laura Warholic in its uncompromising power will surely be one of the most talked-about novels of the season, and for years to come.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - slickdpdx - LibraryThing

At its heights, Warholic is brilliant, fun and thought-provoking. There can be a razor sharp edge between a misanthropist and a person who is able to appreciate even those things that are most ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - paperhouses - LibraryThing

Currently reading, and will be for some time, as my edition clocks in at 748? pgs. or so. Not sure what the extra 150 pages could possibly add. Picked the book up just for the sheer volume of it ... Read full review

Contents

Womanifesto
1
Sorcerer at the Crossroads
18
Rapunzel
19
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Alexander Theroux is an award-winning novelist, poet and teacher whose prose works include Laura Warholic or, The Sexual Intellectual, Estonia, and the two artist monographs The Strange Case of Edward Gorey and The Enigma of Al Capp. His novel Darconville's Cat was chosen by Anthony Burgess as one of the 99 greatest post-war novels. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife Sarah-Son Theroux.

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