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Tom Deignan

Tom Deignan has written about books for The New York Times, Washington Post and Commonweal.  He is working on a book about Ellis Island.  On Twitter: @TomDeignan.

Review of The Patriots

And so, three generations of yearning wanderers are trapped in an emotional limbo between the United States and Russia, weighed down by—yet also dangerously ignorant—of history. When Lenny says, “nothing here is straightforward,” Krasikov wants us to think not only about Russia, but also family life, over the decades.

Alex Gilvarry's Eastman Was Here

In a now-famous 1997 smack down, David Foster Wallace took a generation of great American novelists—Updike, Mailer, Roth—to task.

Jennifer Egan’s The Candy House

It could be argued that Jennifer Egan, in 2010, took it upon herself to find a cure for what Zadie Smith once called “our ailing literary culture.”

Not for Brooklyn in the First Place

Narrated by a young Irish immigrant named Liam, who arrives in Brooklyn from County Clare in 1915, Exile on Bridge Street chronicles the labor and ethnic strife that engulfed the borough’s immigrants and their children.

Fathers and Daughters: Jennifer Egan’s Manhattan Beach

The poet Philip Larkin famously wrote: “They fuck you up, your mum and dad / They may not mean to, but they do.” Anna Kerrigan, the protagonist of Pulitzer Prize-winner Jennifer Egan’s new novel, might well nod at Larkin’s sentiment, certainly as it relates to her father.


The Brooklyn Rail

APRIL 2023

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