Chronic City: A Novel by Jonathan Lethem

By Jonathan Lethem

The bestselling and cherished writer of Motherless Brooklyn and The castle of Solitude grants a searing love letter to town that has encouraged his best work.

Chase Insteadman, former baby tv superstar, has a brand new position in life—permanent visitor at the higher East aspect banquet circuit, the place he's consigned to discuss his astronaut fiancée, Janice Trumbull, who's trapped on a circling area Station. an opportunity come across collides Chase with Perkus teeth, a wily popular culture guru with a vicious conspiratorial streak and the easiest marijuana on the town. regardless of their disparate backgrounds and trajectories Chase and Perkus notice they've got much in universal, together with a solid of pals from all walks of lifestyles in new york. jointly and individually they try and outline the indefinable, and input right into a quest for the main elusive of items: fact and authenticity in a urban the place every little thing has a cost.

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Just before liftoff, Hal Wright mentions that he is a cousin of Orville and Wilbur. An older cousin? “No, they were a bit older,” he says. At about a thousand feet or so, Hal levels her off and reaches into the pile of newspapers in the backseat. Holding the yoke (or as I call it the “steering wheel”) between his knees, Hal begins to hum a tune while folding a paper into a tightly tucked square. ” “Ohhh yeahhh, thanks, I hadn’t noticed that,” Hal replies, making a slow left turn. I pray he’s joking.

He slides back his window, grabs a paper, and without benefit of bombardier instruments, deftly lets it fly at precisely the right moment. Hal makes a second pass and sees the rancher, Chuck Howes, waving and picking up the paper not fifty feet from his front door—a lot closer than I get mine delivered at home. “Sometimes it’s closer, and sometimes it’s farther away,” Howes tells me later, “but Hal drops them right in the yard. He dropped one in the pigpen one time down there. ” Hal has but one mishap this day, at another ranch, where the paper comes untucked and floats down in sections: presumably news, sports, arts and leisure.

Rumor has it that the property is on the market but proving to be a tough sell, owing to the absence of plumbing or electricity—and the corpse in the backyard. “And this is the cryonic storage facility,” says Bo, walking to the Tuff Shed, emblazoned with the fox in huge red letters, representing the Denver radio station that raised funds for Grandpa’s maintenance. A good cause. Bo, who describes himself as an “environmental consultant and planetary ecologist,” opens the two large front doors on the shed, which is roughly about eight feet high, eight feet deep, and ten feet wide.

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