Oxygen by Andrew Miller

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Synopsis

It is the summer of 1997. In England, Alec Valentine is returning home to care for his ailing mother, Alice, a task that only reinforces his deep sense of inadequacy. In San Francisco, his older brother Larry prepares to come home as well, knowing it will be hard to conceal that his acting career is sliding toward sleaze and his marriage is faltering. In Paris, on the other hand, the Hungarian exile László Lázár, whose play Alec is translating, seems to have it all--a comfortable home, critical acclaim, a loving boyfriend, and a close circle of friends. Yet he cannot shake off the memories of the 1956 uprising and the cry for help he left unanswered. As these unforgettable characters soon learn, the moment has come to assess the turns taken and the opportunities missed. For each of them will soon take part in acts of liberation, even if they are not necessarily what they might have expected.
Evoking an extraordinary range of emotions and insights, Oxygen lives and breathes beyond the final page.
 

About Andrew Miller

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Andrew Miller's first novel, Ingenious Pain, won the James Tate Memorial Prize for Fiction. He has since written five novels including Casanova and Oxygen, which was a finalist for the Whitbread Award and the Booker Prize in 2001. He lives in Somerset England.
 
Published October 15, 2012 by Mariner Books. 340 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Oxygen

Kirkus Reviews

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Miller is a graceful and imaginative writer, and he quickly elicits our interest in Alec’s carefully sustained passivity (which seems to have developed from his fearful relationship with his intermittently brutal late father) and in Alice’s complex reminiscences of her youth, marriage, and mother...

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The Guardian

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her impending silence makes her observations in her sunlit bed the more precious, though already 'some of the objects in the room had reached their last declension...' The author carefully turns over imagery and sifts through the emotion that attends to her death as if going through the personal ...

Sep 15 2001 | Read Full Review of Oxygen

The Guardian

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Oxygen Andrew Miller 323pp, Sceptre, £14.99 One of the great benefits of being let in on the Booker judges' advance thinking is that it enables you to consider candidates on the long list who probably won't make the cut, but undoubtedly deserve to.

Aug 25 2001 | Read Full Review of Oxygen

Curious Book Fans

Perhaps only his works – a succession of nihilistic, gloomy, existentialist plays – give a clue that he, too, is struggling with the past.

Aug 12 2011 | Read Full Review of Oxygen

Reader Rating for Oxygen
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