Mr. Ives' Christmas by Oscar Hijuelos

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Synopsis

A moving work from a Pulitzer Prize-winning author concerns the loss of faith endured by Mr. Ives, a businessman whose world is shattered when his son, who is studying for the priesthood, violently dies at Christmas. 100,000 first printing. $125,000 ad/promo. Tour.
 

About Oscar Hijuelos

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Oscar Hijuelos, winner of the 1990 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, was born in New York City and educated at the City College of New York. Hijuelos's novels Our House in the New World (1983) and The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love (winner of the Pulitzer Prize), deal with Cubans who immigrated to America in the 1940s. Concerned with questions of identity and perspective, both novels attempt, in Hijuelos's words, to "commemorate at least a few aspects of the Cuban psyche (as I know it)." Hijuelos's writing is emotional, generous, and elegant; although his novels are in one sense realistic, they also reflect the magic-realist tradition of Latin American writing. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Hijuelos's imagination is epic---he follows his characters' lives from their origins in Cuba to their final days of squalor in Spanish Harlem. Hijuelos portrays with clarity and sympathy characters who succumb to the pressures that "work against the [American] dream of upward mobility." Hijuelos's novel, The Fourteen Sisters of Emilio Montez O'Brien (1993), is quite different from his prize-winning The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love. While that earlier work focused on Cuban-American fraternal machismo, the latter work celebrates femininity in a Pennsylvania family of mixed Cuban and Irish descent. Though displaying some aspects of magic-realism, the work is, in most respects, a realistic account of the lives of its characters. Winner of numerous awards, Hijuelos has been recognized as introducing a new, strong voice to contemporary American fiction.
 
Published January 1, 1995 by Harper-collins Publishers. 256 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Edward Ives was orphaned at two (in 1924), entered a foundling home in Brooklyn, and was adopted by a kindly man named Ives, himself a foundling who now gave his own adoptive son a name and home.

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Publishers Weekly

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Not even a long-foreshadowed and deferred meeting at the end of the book between Ives and his son's murderer helps: ``Nothing monumental transpired.

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