Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem

75%

8 Critic Reviews

...is the kind of book that will keep you turning pages the first time you read it like any thriller worthy of the name. The difference is that Motherless Brooklyn is a book that will give you plenty to ponder and enjoy should you read it
-Blog Critics

Synopsis

From America's most inventive novelist, Jonathan Lethem, comes this compelling and compulsive riff on the classic detective novel.

Lionel Essrog is Brooklyn's very own self-appointed Human Freakshow, an orphan whose Tourettic impulses drive him to bark, count, and rip apart our language in startling and original ways.  Together with three veterans of the St. Vincent's Home for Boys, he works for small-time mobster Frank Minna's limo service cum detective agency. Life without Frank Minna, the charismatic King of Brooklyn, would be unimaginable, so who cares if the tasks he sets them are, well, not exactly legal. But when Frank is fatally stabbed, one of Lionel's colleagues lands in jail, the other two vie for his position, and the victim's widow skips town. Lionel's world is suddenly topsy-turvy, and this outcast who has trouble even conversing attempts to untangle the threads of the case while trying to keep the words straight in his head.  Motherless Brooklyn is a brilliantly original homage to the classic detective novel by one of the most acclaimed writers of his generation.

BONUS MATERIAL: This edition includes an excerpt from Jonathan Lethem's Dissident Gardens.
 

About Jonathan Lethem

See more books from this Author
JONATHAN LETHEM is the author of six novels, including Motherless Brooklyn,The Fortress of Solitude, and Gun, with Occasional Music. He lives in Brooklyn.
 
Published April 20, 2011 by Vintage. 324 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Biographies & Memoirs, Travel, Horror, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction
Bookmark Counts:
1
Want to Read
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for Motherless Brooklyn
All: 8 | Positive: 8 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Above average
Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on May 20 2010

Another terrific entertainment from Lethem, one of contemporary fiction’s most inspired risk-takers. Don’t miss this one.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Albert Mobilio on Oct 17 2008

In ''Motherless Brooklyn,'' solving the crime is beside the point...Instead, this is a novel about the mysteries of consciousness, the dualism Essrog alludes to when he talks about his ''Tourette's brain'' as if it were an entity apart from him.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn | See more reviews from NY Times

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Brian Logan on Jan 24 2008

Author Jonathan Lethem...has created, from what sounds like a ludicrous gimmick, one of fiction's most memorable narrators. Through Lionel - nickname Freakshow - he explores the relationship between what makes us tic and what makes us tick.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn | See more reviews from Guardian

Publishers Weekly

Above average
Reviewed by Publishers Weekly on Aug 30 2008

Hard-boiled crime fiction has never seen the likes of Lionel Essrog, the barking, grunting, spasmodically twitching hero of Lethem's gonzo detective novel that unfolds amidst the detritus of contemporary Brooklyn.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by Jack Goodstein on Jun 11 2012

...is the kind of book that will keep you turning pages the first time you read it like any thriller worthy of the name. The difference is that Motherless Brooklyn is a book that will give you plenty to ponder and enjoy should you read it

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn | See more reviews from Blog Critics

Book Reporter

Good
Reviewed by Sarah Brennan on Oct 24 2008

Of all the cool, hip, postmodern novels that have been flooding the market lately, MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN, with its Tourettic, Prince (as in the Artist Formerly Known As) obsessed, gumshoe hero, is certainly one of the best.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn

PopMatters

Good
Reviewed by Martha Kuhlman on Jan 29 2013

On the contrary, its ingenious detective novel plot, zippy cartoon-inspired language, and memorable characters will earn the novel fans all over the planet. There is even a romantic subplot or two.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn

Salon

Above average
Reviewed by Gary Krist on Sep 23 2008

Lethem harnesses the engine of a familiar genre to transport us to a territory uniquely his own. It comes as no surprise that he uses Tourette’s as an excuse for some heady verbal pyrotechnics.

Read Full Review of Motherless Brooklyn

Reader Rating for Motherless Brooklyn
80%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 369 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


Rate this book!

Add Review

Reader reviews & activity

mareth

mareth 3 Nov 2013

Added the book to want to read list

×