Gob's Grief by Chris Adrian
A Novel

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In the summer of 1863, Gob and Tomo Woodhull, eleven-year-old twin sons of Victoria Woodhull, agree to together forsake their home and family in Licking County, Ohio, for the glories of the Union Army. But on the night of their departure for the war, Gob suffers a change of heart, and Tomo is forced to leave his brother behind. Tomo falls in as a bugler with the Ninth Ohio Volunteers and briefly revels in camp life; but when he is shot clean through the eye in his very first battle, Gob is left to endure the guilt and grief that will later come to fuel his obsession with building a vast machine that will bring Tomo–indeed, all the Civil War dead–back to life.
Epic in scope yet emotionally intimate, Gob’s Grief creates a world both fantastic and familiar and populates it with characters who breath on the page, capturing the spirit of a fevered nation populated with lost brothers and lost souls.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About Chris Adrian

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Selected by the New Yorker as one of the '20 Under 40', Chris Adrian is the author of Gob's Grief, The Children's Hospital, A Better Angel and The Great Night. He works as a paediatrician, living in New York and San Francisco.
Published May 20, 2003 by Vintage. 400 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Gob's Grief

Kirkus Reviews

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Gob’s Grief enchants with its replete portrayal of 19th-century America simultaneously paralyzed and shimmering with purpose and promise, a superabundance of quaint and curious (mainly medical and scientific) lore, and such boldly imagined secondary characters as Pickie Beecher, an oddly propheti...

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Publishers Weekly

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Wracked by guilt at having let his brother go off alone, Gob strikes a bargain with ""a mad hedge wizard"" known as the Urfeist, who agrees to teach Gob to ""defeat death."" Will Fie, who has also lost a brother, is compelled by restless spirits to join Gob's cause;

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Book Reporter

Chris Adrian's novel GOB'S GRIEF is the story of one man's tireless effort to erase the sting of death with his invention, a time machine.

Mar 12 2002 | Read Full Review of Gob's Grief: A Novel

Entertainment Weekly

''It's the greatest open secret, that death will take everyone, that every person is as transient as a shadow.'' Gob's Grief explores that secret through the voices of several eminent 19th-century personages, including Walt Whitman and spiritualist/suffragette Victoria Woodhull — but most po...

Jan 26 2001 | Read Full Review of Gob's Grief: A Novel

Boston Review

Maci's "ghost-written" letters obey a similar reasoning: in life her brother sends her stories and drawings of his life at the front, afterward her hand writes out news of his life after death and drawings for Gob's machine.

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