A Naked Singularity by Sergio De La Pava
A Novel

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Rendered mostly in dialogue, the novel moves quickly despite its labyrinthine construction and epic length.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

A Naked Singularity tells the story of Casi, a child of Colombian immigrants who lives in Brooklyn and works in Manhattan as a public defender--one who, tellingly has never lost a trial. Never. In the book, we watch what happens when his sense of justice and even his sense of self begin to crack--and how his world then slowly devolves. It’s a huge, ambitious novel clearly in the vein of DeLillo, Foster Wallace, Pynchon, and even Melville, and it's told in a distinct, frequently hilarious voice, with a striking human empathy at its center. Its panoramic reach takes readers through crime and courts, immigrant families and urban blight, media savagery and media satire, scatology and boxing, and even a breathless heist worthy of any crime novel. If InfiniteJest stuck a pin in the map of mid-90s culture and drew our trajectory from there, A Naked Singularity does the same for the feeling of surfeit, brokenness, and exhaustion that permeates our civic and cultural life today. In the opening sentence of William Gaddis’s A Frolic of His Own, a character sneers, "Justice? You get justice in the next world. In this world, you get the law." A Naked Singularity reveals the extent of that gap, and lands firmly on the side of those who are forever getting the law.
 

About Sergio De La Pava

See more books from this Author
Sergio De La Pava is a writer who does not live in Brooklyn.
 
Published April 9, 2012 by University of Chicago Press. 690 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Crime. Fiction
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Critic reviews for A Naked Singularity
All: 4 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 2

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Stuart Kelly on Aug 29 2013

The Dantean chilly setting, many of the debates...the inability of the law to be graceful, all tie back to a quotation from Marlowe's Doctor Faustus that seems the hidden epigraph of the book: "Why this is hell, nor am I out of it."

Read Full Review of A Naked Singularity: A Novel | See more reviews from Guardian

WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by Sam Sacks on Jun 15 2012

Rendered mostly in dialogue, the novel moves quickly despite its labyrinthine construction and epic length.

Read Full Review of A Naked Singularity: A Novel | See more reviews from WSJ online

Globe and Mail

Above average
Reviewed by Matt Kavanagh on Jun 15 2012

A Naked Singularity is a hugely ambitious book, if uneven.

Read Full Review of A Naked Singularity: A Novel | See more reviews from Globe and Mail

Toronto Star

Below average
Reviewed by Alex Good on Jul 21 2012

As with any big, satirical novel like this there is much that is thrown at the wall and only some of it sticks. Even recipes and trial transcripts get tossed into the mix.

Read Full Review of A Naked Singularity: A Novel | See more reviews from Toronto Star

Reader Rating for A Naked Singularity
75%

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