The Grand Complication by Allen Kurzweil
A Novel

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Synopsis

With a boss threatening to exile him to driving a bookmobile in Amish Country and a headstrong wife whose erotic pop-up books fail to revive the couples lost intimacy, Alexander retreats to a world of private annotation. Enter Henry James Jesson III, a collector with an improbably literary name, who shares a number of Alexanders unconventional interests. Soon, Jesson hires Alexander for some after-hours research. As his search advances, the librarian realizes there are many more secrets in Jessons life than the ones found in his dazzling Manhattan salon.
 

About Allen Kurzweil

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Allen Kurzweil is the prize-winning author of two novels for adults "A Case of Curiosities" and "The Grand Complication" and two works of fiction for children "Leon and the Spitting Image" and "Leon and the Champion Chip". A recipient of numerous grants and awards, including fellowships from the Guggenheim and Fulbright Foundations and the New York Public Library Center for Scholars and Writers, Kurzweil is currently a fellow at the John Nicholas Brown Center for the Study of American Civilization at Brown University. He lives in Providence, Rhode Island, with his wife and son.
 
Published August 21, 2002 by Hyperion. 359 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Grand Complication

Kirkus Reviews

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The intricacies multiply exponentially, in a deliciously mazelike house of fiction containing innumerable trapdoors, hidden compartments, and mutually reflecting mirrors—and Kurzweil takes it to a whole new level when Alexander begins to suspect he is not just Boswell to Jesson’s Johnson but, qui...

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The New York Times

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Puns, etymologies and a missing centuries-old watch are at the center of Allen Kurzweil's novel

Aug 19 2001 | Read Full Review of The Grand Complication: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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As the investigation deepens and Alexander becomes privy to the cloistered world of Jesson's elegant Manhattan townhouse, Alexander realizes that the elusive timepiece is not the only object under scrutiny.

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BC Books

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When enigmatic, wealthy and sixtysomething bibliophile and art collector Jesson enters the library and first approaches Short with an intriguing book request, also offering up a beguilingly rare writing style and a seeming interest in Boswell and Johnson, Short is bewitched and bothered.

Jan 17 2006 | Read Full Review of The Grand Complication: A Novel

Book Reporter

Alexander does indeed know his stuff, but Jesson now tests him in finding the missing piece to the cabinet, leading Short every which way, trying to find the piece and, more importantly, the stories behind the piece.

Jan 22 2011 | Read Full Review of The Grand Complication: A Novel

People

For lovers of books, language and all things arcane, the New York Public Library is as magical a place as Harry Potter's Hogwarts School.

Sep 10 2001 | Read Full Review of The Grand Complication: A Novel

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