Leave society

Tao Lin, 1983-

Book - 2021

"A bold portrait of a writer working to balance all his lives-as an artist, a son, and a perpetual tourist-and transform his personal chaos into a triumphant new novel In 2014, a novelist named Li leaves Manhattan to visit his parents in Taipei for ten weeks. He doesn't know it yet, but he will put his life on hold-year after year-to make this trip, chronicling everything that transpires before him. Just as he flits in and out of sobriety, relationships, and drafts of a new book, he wi...ll fly between these worlds in hopes of keeping his family together. He will temper arguments, console his parents, and try to understand what it means to find success both as an artist and a son. But how to fit these pieces of his life together? Where to begin? In Leave Society, Tao Lin delivers an engrossing novel about the life, fiction, and where the two blur together. Exploring everyday events and scenes-waiting rooms, dog walks, family meals-Lin spins the ordinary into something monumental, and shows what it is to write a novel in real time. Illuminating and deeply felt, Leave Society is a masterly novel about family and the self"--

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FICTION/Lin Tao
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Location Call Number   Status
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Subjects
Published
New York : Vintage Books 2021.
Language
English
Physical Description
x, 352 pages ; 20 cm
ISBN
9781101974476
1101974478
Main Author
Tao Lin, 1983- (author)
Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Lin (Trip) continues his interest in real-life mystic Terence McKenna with the underwhelming story of a Lin-like New York City novelist facing a crossroads as he travels back and forth between New York City and Taipei. Shortly after Li's arrival in Taipei to visit his parents, he reconsiders having surgery on his concave chest, which he'd declined in the past, and becomes increasingly inspired by McKenna's views on psychedelics. "The world seemed more complex, terrible, hopeful, meaningful, and magical than he'd previously thought or heard," Lin writes of Li's reaction to McKenna's work. Back in Manhattan, Li battles intense back pain, writers block, dwindling finances, and loneliness. When in Taipei, he hopes to improve his health and cultivate artistic inspiration ("living with his parents felt slightly surreal in a way that was satisfying for both his life and his novel"). After a friend moves into his Manhattan building, a surprisingly tender romance blossoms between them. Much of the action and descriptions are banal, and aside from the romance, this feels a bit too detached and devoid of emotion for a book ostensibly about learning to live. Lin's fans might appreciate this, but it doesn't offer anything new. (Aug.) Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

"A bold portrait of a writer working to balance all his lives-as an artist, a son, and a perpetual tourist-and transform his personal chaos into a triumphant new novel In 2014, a novelist named Li leaves Manhattan to visit his parents in Taipei for ten weeks. He doesn't know it yet, but he will put his life on hold-year after year-to make this trip, chronicling everything that transpires before him. Just as he flits in and out of sobriety, relationships, and drafts of a new book, he will fly between these worlds in hopes of keeping his family together. He will temper arguments, console his parents, and try to understand what it means to find success both as an artist and a son. But how to fit these pieces of his life together? Where to begin? In Leave Society, Tao Lin delivers an engrossing novel about the life, fiction, and where the two blur together. Exploring everyday events and scenes-waiting rooms, dog walks, family meals-Lin spins the ordinary into something monumental, and shows what it is to write a novel in real time. Illuminating and deeply felt, Leave Society is a masterly novel about family and the self"--

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Leave Society. Lin, Tao. A young novelist leaves Manhattan to visit his parents in Taipei and discovers his life becoming more complicated as he tries to understand how to live a meaningful life as an artist and a son.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

From the acclaimed author of Taipei, a bold portrait of a writer working to balance all his lives—artist, son, loner—as he spins the ordinary into something monumental. An engrossing, hopeful novel about life, fiction, and where the two blur together.In 2014, a novelist named Li leaves Manhattan to visit his parents in Taipei for ten weeks. He doesn't know it yet, but his life will begin to deepen and complexify on this trip. As he flies between these two worlds--year by year, over four years--he will flit in and out of optimism, despair, loneliness, sanity, bouts of chronic pain, and drafts of a new book. He will incite and temper arguments, uncover secrets about nature and history, and try to understand how to live a meaningful life as an artist and a son. But how to fit these pieces of his life together? Where to begin? Or should he leave society altogether? Exploring everyday events and scenes--waiting rooms, dog walks, family meals--while investigatively venturing to the edges of society, where culture dissolves into mystery, Lin shows what it is to write a novel in real time. Illuminating and deeply felt, as it builds toward a stunning, if unexpected, romance, Leave Society is a masterly story about life and art at the end of history. A VINTAGE ORIGINAL