By Jonathan Lethem
"Tell your tale walking."
St. Vincent's domestic for Boys, Brooklyn, early Seventies. For Lionel Essrog, a.k.a. The Human Freakshow, a sufferer of Tourette's syndrome (an uncontrollable urge to shout out nonsense, contact each floor in succeed in, rearrange objects), Frank Minna is a savior. an area tricky man and fixer, Minna exhibits as much as take Lionel and 3 of his fellow orphans on mysterious errands: they empty a shop of stereos because the proprietor watches; wreck a small leisure park; stopover at outdated Italian males. The 4 develop as much as be the Minna males, a fly-by-night detective agency-cum-limo provider, and their days and nights revolve round Frank, the prince of Brooklyn, who glides via existence on highway smarts, angle, and mystery wisdom. Then one dreadful evening, Frank is knifed and thrown right into a Dumpster, and Lionel needs to turn into a true detective.
As Lionel struggles to discover Frank's killer--without letting his Tourette's get within the way--he's compelled to delve into the advanced, shadowy internet of relationships, threats, and favors that make up the Brooklyn global he idea he knew so good. No one--not Frank, no longer Frank's sour spouse, Julia, now not the opposite Minna Men--is who they appear. now not even The Human Freakshow.
All of the Lethem touches that experience overjoyed critics are here--crackling discussion, sly humor, dizzying plot twists--but they're secondary to splendidly complete, tragic, humorous characterizations, and a stunning evocation of position. certainly, Brooklyn--with its fascinating folkways and language, its targeted sort of bad-guy swagger and sentimentality--becomes itself an incredible character.
Motherless Brooklyn is a bravura functionality: humorous, demanding, touching, extravagant. This novel indications the arrival of age of a huge American author.