9780316177931

ISBN 10: 0316177938 / 0-316-17793-8
ISBN 13: 9780316177931
Publisher: Little, Brown & Co
Publication Date: 2011
Binding: Hardcover
Editorial Reviews:
Synopsis:

The agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, IL, appear ordinary enough to newly arrived trainee David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that new employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns of the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. And he has arrived at a moment when forces within the IRS are plotting to eliminate even what little humanity and dignity the work still has.

THE PALE KING remained unfinished at the time of David Foster Wallace's death, but it is a deeply intriguing and satisfying novel, hilarious and fearless and as original as anything Wallace ever undertook. It grapples directly with ultimate questions--questions of life's meaning and of the ultimate value of work and family--through characters imagined with the interior force and generosity that were Wallace's unique gifts. Along the way it suggests a new idea of heroism and commands infinite respect for a writer who dared to take on the most daunting subjects the human spirit can imagine.


 

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The Pale King (ISBN: 0316177938 / 0-316-17793-8)
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Book Description: Little, Brown. 1 Cloth(s), 2011. hard. Book Condition: New. "In this final, ambitious, brilliant novel from the author of Infinite Jest, the agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, Illinois, appear ordinary enough to newly arrived trainee David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that new employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns of the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. And he has arrived at a moment when forces within the IRS are plotting to eliminate even what little humanity and dignity the work still has. Though The Pale King remained unfinished at the time of Wallace's death, it is a deeply compelling and satisfying novel, hilarious and fearless and as original as anything Wallace ever undertook. It grapples directly with deeply human questions—questions of life's meaning and of the value of work and society—through characters imagined with the interior force and generosity that were Wallace's unique gifts. This extraordinary work is presented here in a large print edition. "The overture to Wallace's unfinished last novel is a rhapsodic evocation of the subtle vibrancy of the Midwestern landscape, a flat, wind-scoured place of potentially numbing sameness that is, instead, rife with complex drama. Feverishly encompassing, sharply comedic, and haunting . this is not a novel of defeat but, rather, of oddly heroic persistence . electrifying in its portrayal of individuals seeking unlikely refuge in a vast, absurd bureaucracy. In the spirit of Borges, Gaddis, and Terry Gilliam's Brazil, Wallace conducts a commanding and ingenious inquiry into monumental boredom, sorrow, the deception of appearances, and the redeeming if elusive truth that any endeavor, however tedious, however impossible, can become a conduit to enlightenment, or at least a way station in a world where 'everything is on fire, slow fire'."—Booklist (starred review)"A thrilling read, replete with the author's humor, which is oftentimes bawdy and always bitingly smart. The notion that this book is 'unfinished' should not be given too much weight. The Pale King is, in many ways, quite complete: its core characters are fully drawn, each with a defining tic, trait, or backstory . Moreover, the book is far from incomplete in its handling of a host of themes, most of them the same major issues, applicable to all of us, with which Wallace also grappled in Infinite Jest: unconquerable boredom, the quest for satisfaction in work, the challenge of really knowing other people and the weight of sadness. The experience to be had from reading The Pale King feels far more weighty and affecting than a nicely wrapped story. Its reach is broad, and its characters stay with you."—National Public Radio" 944. Bookseller Inventory # 31124

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Book Description: Hachette Book Group. Book Condition: New. Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 0316177938

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Book Description: Little, Brown and Company, 2011. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from US. Bookseller Inventory # VH-9780316177931

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