Ethan Coen Gates of Eden

ISBN 13: 9780385334389

Gates of Eden

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9780385334389: Gates of Eden
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A middle-aged man beheads his wife, then calmly explains how she drove him to it . . . A fat little mafioso is going to war--in the clean, well-mannered streets of Minneapolis . . . A Jewish boy watches with wonder the rise and fall of a Hebrew school rebel--and sees the sadness at the heart of his own family. . . . Welcome to the world of Ethan Coen, one half of the filmmaking team that has unleashed a visionary, brutal, and uproarious portrait of America in such screen classics as Fargo and Raising Arizona. Now Ethan Coen translates that vision to the printed page--in fourteen keenly imagined, sharply etched short stories. Blending parody with pathos, making the heinous heartbreaking, Coen demonstrates his unique gift for stunningly inventive narrative, brutal irony, offbeat characters, and crackling dialogue, delivering everything you would expect from such an original imagination.

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Review:

Small-time mobsters, private investigators, adulterers, and Hebrew-school students populate these stories written by Ethan Coen, the Oscar-winning cowriter of the Fargo screenplay. Read mostly by actors who have appeared in his films--including regulars Steve Buscemi, John Goodman, and John Turturro--these vignettes are set primarily in Minneapolis. There is a lot of fighting, farting, and the other f word in these tapes, disqualifying this audiobook for the fainthearted, but the listener is well rewarded with some smart, if brutal, writing. Standouts include the Matt Dillon-read "Destiny," a Mafioso story about a college graduate-cum-failed boxer whose poverty sucks him into an underworld rivalry, and William H. Macy's reading of the title story, a tongue-in-cheek noir featuring a Californian who is temporarily distracted from his work by a geisha goddess. (Running time: 5.5 hours, 4 cassettes) --Kimberly Heinrichs

From the Back Cover:

"Often funny, sometimes disturbing. . . Mr. Coen has sounded the jagged dissonance of the American experience."
--Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, The New York Times

"In Gates of Eden, the co-creator of such films as Fargo and Blood Simple delivers blackly humorous and often unsettling vignettes. . . .All the Coen brothers trademarks are here. . . funny. . .compelling stories."
--USA Today

"A distinctive voice and an offbeat worldview. . . All of these stories take place in Coen Brothers Land, a parallel universe similar to our own--except it's weirder, funnier and better edited."
--The New York Times Book Review

"The discriminating viewer who enjoyed [Coen's] distinctive and quirky films will like the equally unconventional Gates of Eden. Coen delights in juxtaposing tone, character and setting to comic and chilling effect."
--The Washington Post

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

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Publisher: Harper Perennial, 2008
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