Innocents and Others

Innocents and Others

A Novel

Book - 2016
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"The most ambitious, accomplished, and beguiling novel yet from the author of the National Book Award finalist Eat the Document and the National Books Critics Circle Award finalist Stone Arabia. Innocents and Others is a riveting story about three women looking for meaning in friendship, work, and love--"Dana Spiotta is a major unnervingly intelligent writer" (Joy Williams, author of The Quick and the Dead). They've always been friends, and they both become filmmakers: Meadow, who makes documentaries, and Carrie, who makes popular movies with a feminist slant. They grew up together in LA, sharing an obsessive love of film. Their friendship is complicated, but their devotion to each other trumps their wildly different approaches to work and to being in the world. Their lives collide with Jelly, a woman whose most meaningful encounters happen on the phone. Jelly cold calls powerful men and seduces them not through sex but through listening. All the women grapple with the consequences of their actions and with the question of how to be good: a good artist, a good lover, a good friend, a good mother. They all fall short, but as they struggle toward an acceptance of their limits, they approach a kind of release. A startlingly acute observer of the way we live now, Spiotta is a "wonderfully gifted writer with an uncanny feel for the absurdities and sadnesses of contemporary life, and an unerring ear for how people talk and try to cope today" (The New York Times). She is masterful at evoking the complexity of identity, the corrosive nature of technology, the tyranny of the body, and the enduring longing for connection. Innocents and Others is an ambitious and unforgettable new novel, "a literary marvel ... her aim is nothing less than redemption, and she delivers" (Mary Karr, author Lit and The Liars' Club)"-- Provided by publisher.
"From the strikingly original National Book Award nominee, a riveting novel set in Los Angeles and New York that focuses on three women--how they define themselves, how they create meaningful work, how they love"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Scribner,, 2016
Edition: First Scribner hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781501122729
Branch Call Number: FICTION Spiotta 2016
Characteristics: 279 pages ; 24 cm
Alternative Title: Innocents & others


From Library Staff

Diana Martinez: Before I came to Omaha, I spent 6 years working on a dissertation on women filmmakers, and the first book I’ve read since leaving grad school is a book about… women filmmakers! The book follows two friends, Meadow and Carrie, who have both become filmmakers -- one makes hard-hitti... Read More »

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Sep 10, 2017

It takes a few pages to get used to the jumping chapters of characters and events. The events within a friendship of two girls are cleverly done. We see how their friendship evolves and fades, the secret feelings of jealousy. Intriguing if not new the self examination after an accident. Who is the innocent and who is the other? Good title.

May 10, 2016

One of the first novels I've read that devotes itself to giving the details of a woman artist at work. Meadow is a documentary filmmaker and we read a lot about her influences and her process. I would have liked it to have had a more unifying ending but ultimately decided it was more a book of relationships and ideas and the plot was secondary. The opening chapter - an essay written by Meadow and posted online, complete with comments - is one of the best things I've read this year.

LPL_DirectorBrad Mar 10, 2016

Books I really like tend to escape my ability to describe what I find so great about them. This is one of those books. Let me give it a try. Dana Spiotta writes books that are almost exactly what I want to read. She blends fictional characters into known cultural history so well. It is really hard to write well about film and music in fiction. Here she introduces characters into our known world and creates fictional films that thread themselves into that history. I also love how Spiotta writes about sound. The portions of the book on phreaking and old phone technology is fascinating. Thank you, Ms. Spiotta for another great novel!


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