In America: A Novel

By Susan Sontag

In America is a kaleidoscopic portrait of the USA at the cusp of modernity. As she did in her significantly well known novel The Volcano Lover, Susan Sontag casts a narrative positioned long ago in a clean, provocative gentle to create a fictional international jam-packed with modern resonance.

In 1876 a gaggle of Poles led by way of Maryna Zalezowska, Poland's maximum actress, to migrate to the us and shuttle to California to chanced on a "utopian commune." while the commune fails, Maryna remains, learns English, and―as Marina Zalenska―forges a brand new, much more successful profession at the American degree, changing into a diva on par with Sara Bernhardt.

In the USA is approximately many stuff: a woman's look for self-transformation; the destiny of idealism; a existence within the theater; the numerous kinds of love; and, now not least of all, tales and storytelling itself. Operatic within the scope and depth of the sentiments it depicts, richly exact and visionary in its account of the US, and peopled with unforgettable characters.

In America is the winner of the 2000 nationwide e-book Award for Fiction.

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I puzzled what her genuine age used to be; finally, she was once an actress. If this have been occurring now, i might have acknowledged she used to be in her mid-forties (the plentiful bosom and heavy jaw, the really apt routine, the cumbersome gown). yet, understanding that even the well-off elderly quicker then, and that everybody no longer negative used to be, via our criteria, obese, I gave her not more than thirty-five. I haven’t acknowledged that I’ve been fiddling all besides the obvious age of every body within the room: Ryszard, for the reason that he regarded deep in his thirties, needed to be twenty-five, and so on. touring again to the prior, I anticipated there to be a few frustrations (the towering, fire-concealing range rather than a waist-level, blazing fire) and some changes (to estimate the age of an individual previous his or her mid-twenties, deduct ten years), in addition to the glaring compensations and illuminations. the controversy had developed from pleasantries in regards to the meals to a hurry of compliment for Maryna’s functionality this night. She approved the compliments with a modesty that appeared as adamant because it was once captivating. How greatest it used to be, acknowledged Ryszard, his face aglow with admiration. you actually did surpass your self, if this kind of factor is feasible, acknowledged the younger painter. She constantly does, the best actor acknowledged graciously, reprovingly. Dissociating herself from all this rainy urge for food, Maryna sat very nonetheless, she seemed scarcely to be respiring, a cambric handkerchief to her left cheek. È sempre brava, the medical professional confided to the mystified waiter who used to be refilling his glass. Following a lull within the voices and a go back to extra devoted consuming, after all i used to be hoping for anything else, the critic rose unsteadily, vodka in hand. To you, Madame. each glass other than Maryna’s was once lifted. To this evening’s triumph. The surgeon eased his glass towards his mouth. carry on, now not so quick, Henryk, the critic exclaimed with mock severity. Don’t you spot I haven’t comprehensive? Groaning, the surgeon again his arm to toast place. The critic cleared his throat, then intoned: And to that chic and patriotic paintings that you honor together with your good looks and genius. To the theatre. Maryna nodded to him and the others, pursing her lips, then whispered whatever to the impresario, who used to be seated at her correct. That wasn’t reasonable, that’s no longer one toast yet 3, acknowledged the health care provider gaily. 3 toasts, 3 infusions of this wonderful vodka! He hailed one of many waiters. no longer, pricey Maryna, that I don’t subscribe with all my middle to the emotions simply uttered, he acknowledged as his glass was once back refilled. Then, elevating it once again: for your functionality day after today. And he emptied the glass. subsequent Bogdan, on the different finish of the desk, rose to his toes. no longer wishing to vex our thirsty buddy, he acknowledged, I shall restrict myself to 1 toast. And it is—glass within the air—to friendship. listen, pay attention, Ryszard known as out. certain, acknowledged Bogdan, and to our sodality. Sodality, i assumed. What does that suggest? glance, he’s doing it too, the health professional had shouted, vodka already to his lips and consuming so avidly that he had spilled a few on his linen blouse.

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