David Fite The HOPE Project

ISBN 13: 9780692734230

The HOPE Project

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9780692734230: The HOPE Project

The HOPE Project is the story of a young Mexican-American man named Jesus Hernandez who, in the fall of 1979 in Los Angeles, starts a "project" to "save America"--or perhaps, as another character sardonically observes, to "clean up his house." The novel moves along propelled by the mystery of what Jesus, an innocent and con man, is trying to accomplish, especially in his stormy relation to the novel's first-person narrator, a young white journalist recently arrived in Los Angeles from the Midwest. Surrounding the two main characters are dozens of others, from punk rockers to renegade hippies, real estate developers and bankers, and a young Mexican-American artist who makes fiber lizards. Perhaps most important is Krissie X, a tenant in Jesus's house in the Hollywood hills. A punk rocker, nude dancer in a Hollywood nightclub, and lapsed Catholic fierce in her visionary devotion to Christ, she serves as the focus of much of the developing drama between the narrator and Jesus. The HOPE Project is an epic novel about California which is not focused on the Hollywood scene which for many is interchangeable with American dreams. It is a story of Los Angeles, of a friendship hard-won by a Mexican-American and a white man through their differences, and a tale of what happened to America during the seventies. Set in the dawn of the Reagan era, The HOPE Project presages the emerging multicultural society of the past three decades. It portrays a nation of dreamers who are searching for their place in the sun. At the center of the novel stands Jesus Hernandez, a Mexican-American man whose conflicted heart soars with the dream of progress for himself and his diverse communities. The HOPE Project is an expansive novel about American dreams which is consistent with the ambitions of writers like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Thomas Pynchon, and Nathanael West, and draws from the vision of earlier writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman with whom The HOPE Project compares while standing alone as a fresh and singular contribution to the contemporary literary scene.

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About the Author:

David Fite has served as a professor of English and administrator at many universities, including Santa Clara University, Catholic University, California State Polytechnic University, Chapman University, and the University of Redlands. He has published numerous critical articles and a well-received book on the critic Harold Bloom. His main work and interest for the last several decades has been The HOPE Project, an ambitious novel which explores the foundations of American dreaming in a modern context and a California setting.

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