The Tetherballs of Bougainville by Mark Leyner

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From his cult classic,  I Smell Esther Williams, to his wildly popular and insightful column "Wild Kingdom" appearing in Esquire magazine every month, Mark Leyner has been giving us up close and personal encounters of the most hilarious kind for over a decade.

Now, in his new novel The Tetherballs of Bougainville, Leyner shares with us,  long last, the quintessential coming of age story that every writer, at some point, is compelled to tell.  In the novel we meet young Mark Leyner, 13-years-old to be exact, as he waits in a New Jersey prison to witness his father's execution.  Adolescence is never easy, and it just so happens that this junior high schooler is on deadline to turn in a screenplay for which he has already been awarded the Vincent and Lenore DiGiacomo/Oshimitsu Polymers America Award.  And, as it was for all of us during out teenage years, nothing seems to go as planned.

Written as autobiography, screenplay and movie review, The Tetherballs of Bougainville twists three familiar narrative forms into an outlandishly compelling story.  Leyner's use of the media-driven formats brilliantly reflects our secret, shameful and hilarious desire to experience our private lives as mass entertainment.  The Tetherballs of Bougainville skewers and celebrates American pop culture in the late twentieth century.  Leyner's version of our lives is so deeply funny because it is so painfully true.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Mark Leyner

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Mark Leyner is the author of the novels My Cousin, My Gastroenterologist, Et Tu, Babe and The Tetherballs of Bougainville. His nonfiction includes the #1 New York Times bestseller, Why Do Men Have Nipples? He cowrote the movie War, Inc. and lives in Hoboken, New Jersey.
Published August 17, 2011 by Vintage. 241 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction

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Naturally, Mark finds it hard to concentrate on his father's impending demise, which is just as well, really, since after receiving three massive lethal injections Mr. Leyner remains perfectly alive and subsequently is resentenced to New Jersey State Discretionary Execution (don't ask) and releas...

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Publishers Weekly

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Luckily, Leyner's dad is about to survive execution by lethal injection (years of PCP use and low gamma ray tolerance have built up his resistance to FDA-approved toxins), qualifying him for the innovative, Damoclean ""New Jersey State Discretionary Execution"" program, and the warden (""an absol...

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Entertainment Weekly

The plot of this book follows a New Jersey student/champion tetherball player whose father is about to be executed for shooting a security guard who caught him shoplifting an ice cream scooper...

Nov 07 1997 | Read Full Review of The Tetherballs of Bougainville


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