The Instructions

The Instructions

Book - 2010
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Beginning with a chance encounter with the beautiful Eliza June Watermark and ending, four days and 900 pages later, with the Events of November 17, this is the story of Gurion Maccabee, age ten: a lover, a fighter, a scholar, and a truly spectacular talker. Expelled from three Jewish day-schools for acts of violence and messianic tendencies, Gurion ends up in the Cage, a special lockdown program for the most hopeless cases of Aptakisic Junior High. Separated from his scholarly followers, Gurion becomes a leader of a very different sort, with righteous aims building to a revolution of troubling intensity. The Instructions is an absolutely singular work of fiction by an important new talent. Combining the crackling voice of Philip Roth with the encyclopedic mind of David Foster Wallace, Adam Levin has shaped a world driven equally by moral fervor and slapstick comedy-a novel that is muscular and exuberant, troubling and empathetic, monumental, breakneck, romantic, and unforgettable.
Publisher: San Francisco, CA : McSweeneys Rectangulars, c2010
ISBN: 9781934781821
Branch Call Number: FIC LEV
Characteristics: 1030 p. ; 24 cm


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Sep 12, 2011

Monster book. A compelling stroy about a precocious ten year old, a boy who in many ways acts like he is twice his age. At the same time the details are all about elementary/middle school, and the arcane interpretations of the Torah. It is worth staying with despite an almost Proustian development because the world of the kids is so real. It is not the great book I was hping for, because, well, you'll just have to read the ending.

debwalker Dec 10, 2010

"In this surreal, rambling debut, a 10-year-old with counterinsurgency training leads his most troubled classmates in a violent uprising. Oh, did I mention the boy might also be the messiah? Yes, it's over 1,000 pages long; yes, it's worth it."
Top Ten of 2010: Ron Hogan, reviewer

Selected by Randy Boyagoda as book of the year: "Adam Levin’s huge The Instructions might prove, in time, to be the boldest American fiction effort of recent years."

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