Rachel Kushner

Rachel Kushner’s debut novel, Telex from Cuba, was a finalist for the 2008 National Book Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, winner of the California Book Award, and a New York Times bestseller and Notable Book. The Flamethrowers, received rave reviews across the country, and Kushner was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2013. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Paris Review, The Believer, Artforum, Bookforum, Fence, Bomb, Cabinet, and Grand Street. She lives in Los Angeles.
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Rachel Kushner
From twice National Book Award–nominated Rachel Kushner, whose Flamethrowers was called “the best, most brazen, most interesting book of the year” (Kathryn Schulz, New York magazine), comes a spectacularly compelling, heart-stopping novel about a life gone off the rails in contemporary America.

It’s 2003 and Romy Hall is at the start of two consecutive life sentences at Stanville Women’s Correctional Facility, deep in California’s Central Valley. Outside is the world from which she has been severed: the San Francisco of her youth and her young son, Jackson. Inside is a new reality: thousands of women hustling for the bare essentials needed to survive; the bluffing and pageantry and casual acts of violence by guards and prisoners alike; and the deadpan absurdities of institutional living, which Kushner evokes with great humor and precision.

Stunning and unsentimental, The Mars Room demonstrates new levels of mastery and depth in Kushner’s work. It is audacious and tragic, propulsive and yet beautifully refined. As James Wood said in The New Yorker, her fiction “succeeds because it is so full of vibrantly different stories and histories, all of them particular, all of them brilliantly alive.”

“Kushner is going to be one we turn to for our serious pleasures and for the insight and wisdom we’ll be needing in hard times to come. She is a novelist of the very first order.” —Robert Stone

“Kushner is a young master. I honestly don’t know how she is able to know so much and convey all of this in such a completely entertaining and mesmerizing way.” —George Saunders
Rachel Kushner
Rachel Kushner’s The Flamethrowers, a finalist for the National Book Award, was just named a Top Ten Book of 2013 by the New York Times Book Review and one of Time magazine’s top ten fiction books. Kushner’s first novel, Telex from Cuba, was also a finalist for a National Book Award and was reviewed on the cover of The New York Times Book Review. The Flamethrowers, even more ambitious and brilliant, is the riveting story of a young artist and the worlds she encounters in New York and Rome in the mid-1970s—by turns underground, elite, and dangerous.

The year is 1975 and Reno—so-called because of the place of her birth—has come to New York intent on turning her fascination with motorcycles and speed into art. Her arrival coincides with an explosion of activity in the art world—artists have colonized a deserted and industrial SoHo, are staging actions in the East Village, and are blurring the line between life and art. Reno meets a group of dreamers and raconteurs who submit her to a sentimental education of sorts. Ardent, vulnerable, and bold, she begins an affair with an artist named Sandro Valera, the semi-estranged scion of an Italian tire and motorcycle empire. When they visit Sandro’s family home in Italy, Reno falls in with members of the radical movement that overtook Italy in the seventies. Betrayal sends her reeling into a clandestine undertow.

The Flamethrowers is an intensely engaging exploration of the mystique of the feminine, the fake, the terrorist. At its center is Kushner’s brilliantly realized protagonist, a young woman on the verge. Thrilling and fearless, this is a major American novel from a writer of spectacular talent and imagination.
Rachel Kushner
From the National Book Award Finalist and New York Times bestselling author of The Flamethrowers, an astonishingly wise, ambitious, and riveting novel set in the American community in Cuba during the years leading up to Castro's revolution—a place that was a paradise for a time and for a few. The first novel to tell the story of the Americans who were driven out in 1958, this is a masterful debut with a unique and necessary lens into US-Cuba relations.

Young Everly Lederer and K.C. Stites come of age in Oriente Province, where the Americans tend their own fiefdom—three hundred thousand acres of United Fruit Company sugarcane that surround their gated enclave. If the rural tropics are a child's dreamworld, Everly and K.C. nevertheless have keen eyes for the indulgences and betrayals of the grown-ups around them—the mordant drinking and illicit loves, the race hierarchies and violence.

In Havana, a thousand kilometers and a world away from the American colony, a cabaret dancer meets a French agitator named Christian de La Mazière, whose seductive demeanor can't mask his shameful past. Together they become enmeshed in the brewing political underground. When Fidel and Raúl Castro lead a revolt from the mountains above the cane plantation, torching the sugar and kidnapping a boat full of "yanqui" revelers, K.C. and Everly begin to discover the brutality that keeps the colony humming. Though their parents remain blissfully untouched by the forces of history, the children hear the whispers of what is to come.

Kushner's first novel is a tour de force, haunting and compelling, with the urgency of a telex from a forgotten time and place.
Rachel Kushner
Reno a trois passions : la vitesse, la moto et la photographie. Elle débarque à New York en 1977 et s’installe à Soho, haut lieu de la scène artistique, où elle fréquente une tribu dissolue d’artistes rêveurs, narcisses qui la soumettent à une éducation intellectuelle et sentimentale. Reno entame alors une liaison avec l’artiste Sandro Valera, fils d’un grand industriel milanais qu’elle suit en Italie où ils sont bientôt emportés dans le tourbillon de violence des années de plomb.
Un tour de force, un roman électrique au centre duquel Reno, jeune femme « en quête d’expériences », se construit face au miroir déformant de l’art et du mensonge.

« Kushner est en train de devenir très rapidement un auteur majeur et passionnant. » Jonathan Franzen

« C’est une des expériences littéraires les plus excitantes et électrisantes que j’ai eue au cours de cette décennie... On y trouve des échos de De Lillo, de Doctorow, de Carey. Rachel Kushner a un talent extraordinaire dévoué au paysage, à la vie, à la langue. » Colum McCann

« Les Lance-flammes est à la hauteur de son titre incendiaire. Je recommande ce livre étonnant à tous ceux que je connais. » Karen Russell

« Une vision panoramique... Rachel Kushner écrit sur l’exaltation et la tension avec gusto et grâce. Sa description de New York et de l’Italie est teintée d’une ironie sombre et savoureuse. » Colm Tóibín

« Courageux, maîtrisé, porté par une profonde imagination. » Peter Carey

« Les Lance-flammes est à la hauteur de son titre incendiaire. Je recommande ce livre étonnant à tous ceux que je connais. » Karen Russell

« Une vision panoramique... Rachel Kushner écrit sur l’exaltation et la tension avec gusto et grâce. Sa description de New York et de l’Italie est teintée d’une ironie sombre et savoureuse. » Colm Tóibín « Courageux, maîtrisé, porté par une profonde imagination. » Peter Carey

« Le roman le plus intéressant, le plus osé de l’année. Le meilleur. » New York Magazine

« La prose de Rachel Kushner possède un équilibre, une précision, un grain qui rappellent Robert Stone et Joan Didion. » The New York Times

« Une performance étourdissante. » The Washington Post

« Kushner sans peur s’attaque aux questions essentielles, l’authenticité, le choix, l’identité, les classes sociales... Un roman généreux, ambitieux et original. » The New York Times Book Review

« On ne saurait rêver mieux. C’est un roman politique, féministe, sexy. D’une éloquence peu commune... profondément convaincant. » Harpers

« Un livre comme des charbons ardents. » Vanity Fair

Traduit de l’anglais (États-Unis) par Françoise Smith

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