Geek Love: A Novel

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National Book Award finalist

Here is the unforgettable story of the Binewskis, a circus-geek family whose matriarch and patriarch have bred their own exhibit of human oddities (with the help of amphetamine, arsenic, and radioisotopes). Their offspring include Arturo the Aquaboy, who has flippers for limbs and a megalomaniac ambition worthy of Genghis Khan . . . Iphy and Elly, the lissome Siamese twins . . . albino hunchback Oly, and the outwardly normal Chick, whose mysterious gifts make him the family’s most precious—and dangerous—asset. 

As the Binewskis take their act across the backwaters of the U.S., inspiring fanatical devotion and murderous revulsion; as its members conduct their own Machiavellian version of sibling rivalry, Geek Love throws its sulfurous light on our notions of the freakish and the normal, the beautiful and the ugly, the holy and the obscene. Family values will never be the same.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Vintage
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Published on
May 25, 2011
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Pages
368
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ISBN
9780307794482
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Family Life / General
Fiction / Literary
Fiction / Magical Realism
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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"An immigrant-ethnic cocktail laced with political oppression, but before shaking, [Alia Yunis] adds Scheherazade, the fabled storyteller who kept herself alive by distracting her tyrannical husband for a thousand and one nights." --Carolyn See, Washington Post 

After 85 years, Fatima knows that she is dying because for the last 991 days she has been visited by the immortal storyteller from The Arabian Nights, Scheherazade. 

Just as Scheherazade spun magical stories for 1,001 nights to save her own life, Fatima has spent each night telling Scheherazade her life stories. But with only nine days left before her death, Fatima has a few loose ends to tie up. She must find a wife for her openly gay grandson, teach Arabic (and birth control) to her 17-year-old great-granddaughter, make amends with her estranged husband, and decide which of her troublesome children should inherit her family's home in Lebanon--a house she herself has not seen in nearly 70 years. 

Fatima’s children are spread far apart and are wrapped up in their own chaotic lives seemingly disinterested in their mother and their inheritances. But as she weaves stories of her husband, children, and grandchildren, Fatima brings together a family that is both capricious and steadfast, affectionate and also smothering, connected yet terribly alone. Taken all together, they present a striking and surprising tapestry of modern Arab American life.

Shifting between America and Lebanon over the last hundred years, Alia Yunis crafts a bewitching debut novel imbued with great humanity, imagination, family drama and a touch of magic realism. Be prepared to feel utterly charmed.
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