Animal Magnet Paperback – Jan 2011
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Animal Magnet, is a wildly inventive novel in the tradition of John Barth or Thomas Pynchon spanning centuries and continents. The story begins with a forbidden love affair in the 18th century and ends three centuries years later in a futuristic L.A.
Witty and delightful.
Gary Anderson says: Animal Magnet is a family saga that follows the illegitimate line of a tutor, Péter Montgolfier, and a lunatic scullery maid, Theresa Seyfert, in 18th century Hungary. Spanning centuries and continents, the story jumps generationally if erratically down the family tree, finally ending more than two centuries years later in a futuristic L.A. with controversial performance artist Vic Ray. Along the way, we meet a number of different family members: Ernst Seyfert, footman and fratricide; Georges d’Aubigne, suicidal playwright and républicain; Joseph Vasser, bigamist and author of the Bible II; and Jesus Ramos, the Dog-faced Boy; to name a few. Having said this, I should add that Animal Magnet is an unusual family saga, in that, it is told from numerous and at times oblique perspectives, while using various literary (and some non-literary) forms and styles. Ultimately, I think the novel grapples with the notion of humanness, human identity and humanity.
Goodreads review: If you like Pynchon and Barth, then you'll adore "Animal Magnet": I really can't recommend it more highly. "Animal Magnet" offers one of the most innovative and readable new novels that I've read in years. A cunning, bawdy tale. Gary Anderson consistently amazes in terms of his pure literary invention. It is truly rare to uncover such talent in an incredibly intelligent, literary voice at work: Gary Anderson's literary creativity is off the charts. – David B. Lentz