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Academy Award winner Kevin Kline stars in the adaptation of the title story in this collection in a Universal Pictures release directed by Michael Hoffman (Restoration)
The Palace Thief is the story of a dedicated and inspiring classics professor at an elite prep school where an encounter with a student, the son of a powerful senator, inexorably alters his life. Forty-one years later at a reunion of his students, he is faced with the fear that he may have failed the most important challenge of his lifeâ€”to have been a great teacher.
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Ethan Canin is the author of Emperor of the Air, For Kings and Planets,and Carry Me Across the Water, among other books. A former physician, he is now on the faculty of the Iowa Writers' Workshop.
Canin's return to short fiction should be a cause for welcome- -yet isn't, disappointingly. In four adipose, rhetorical, quite forced long stories, he continues--as in his unfortunate last book, the novel Blue River (1991)--to strive for ``wise'' adult tonalities. But these rich, deep voices all but neglect the small flashes of humaneness and helpless knowledge that made Canin's debut collection, Emperor of the Air (1988), remarkable--turning him into a writer who builds high, fussy, false ceilings without walls to support them. Upon an unstartling theme--that we repeat as adults what we do as children- -each story here plays out a variation. In the baldest, the title piece, a powerful captain of industry still is moved to impress his elderly prep-school teacher with his temerity and moral sleaze. In ``Accountant,'' an old friend's later-life success throws a careful man to the edge of his rectitude. In ``City of Broken Hearts,'' a middle-aged father learns something about trust and love from his college-aged son. And in ``Batorsag and Szerelem,'' a boy observes in his elder genius brother what seem like signs of schizophrenia but are instead sexual misapprehensions. It's here that the book is most ragged but also most genuine-seeming: the younger boy has available to him an X-raying psychology no grown-up character in Canin ever does (Canin must be the ultimate ``kid-brother'' writer)--and it's frustrating that this quicksilver perceptiveness is given so little play in the stories, which are bulked-up instead with grown-up characters that are invariably slow, large, and overwide. The stories thus always seem to be wearing their parent's clothes--an effect that reaches into the prose itself, a simulacrum of Cheeverian and Peter Tayloresque modulation that in Canin's hands is just pomp and circumstance. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Picador, 2002. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0312307314
Book Description Picador, 2002. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110312307314
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Book Description Picador, 2002. Paperback. Condition: New. 1st. Ships with Tracking Number! INTERNATIONAL WORLDWIDE Shipping available. Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory # 0312307314n