Adverbs

Adverbs

Book - 2006
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Hello.

I am Daniel Handler, the author of this book. Did you know that authors often write the summaries that appear on their book's dust jacket? You might want to think about that the next time you read something like, "A dazzling page-turner, this novel shows an internationally acclaimed storyteller at the height of his astonishing powers."

Adverbs is a novel about love -- a bunch of different people, in and out of different kinds of love. At the start of the novel, Andrea is in love with David -- or maybe it's Joe -- who instead falls in love with Peter in a taxi. At the end of the novel, it's Joe who's in the taxi, falling in love with Andrea, although it might not be Andrea, or in any case it might not be the same Andrea, as Andrea is a very common name. So is Allison, who is married to Adrian in the middle of the novel, although in the middle of the ocean she considers a fling with Keith and also with Steve, whom she meets in an automobile, unless it's not the same Allison who meets the Snow Queen in a casino, or the same Steve who meets Eddie in the middle of the forest. . . .

It might sound confusing, but that's love, and as the author -- me -- says, "It is not the nouns. The miracle is the adverbs, the way things are done." This novel is about people trying to find love in the ways it is done before the volcano erupts and the miracle ends. Yes, there's a volcano in the novel. In my opinion a volcano automatically makes a story more interesting.

Publisher: New York : Ecco, 2006
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780060724412
0060724412
Branch Call Number: FICTION Handler
Characteristics: 272 p. ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: Adverbs : a novel

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WVMLStaffPicks Jan 24, 2015

Handler, a.k.a. Lemony Snicket, titles each of these 16 interlocking stories with an adverb such as "Obviously" or "Soundly" describing a variant of love. Quirky characters are mixed with absurd humour and observations of contemporary urban life and love.

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mbssmith
Jan 15, 2014

This was an amazing book. It had a very dreamlike quality to it, which I liked. I'm not sure if it qualifies as a collection of essays or short stories, short stories, most likely.

a
AJ_in_CoMo
Mar 21, 2011

I'll admit Handler is a creative author whose prose illicits strong images, but this book is not for someone who likes order or resolution. Reading it, your instinct is to figure out a timeline of the actions and how the characters relate to each other, but then Handler tells you straight out in a later chapter that this cannot be done and you just have to take the stories as-is. I don't think I'd recommend it, but I wouldn't dissuade anyone from reading it, either.

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