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Told in three distinct and uniquely compelling sections, Asymmetry explores the imbalances that spark and sustain many of our most dramatic human relations: inequities in age, power, talent, wealth, fame, geography, and justice. The first section, "Folly", tells the story of Alice, a young American editor, and her relationship with the famous and much older writer Ezra Blazer. A tender and exquisite account of an unexpected romance that takes place in New York during the early years of the Iraq War, "Folly" also suggests an aspiring novelist's coming-of-age. By contrast, "Madness" is narrated by Amar, an Iraqi-American man who, on his way to visit his brother in Kurdistan, is detained by immigration officers and spends the last weekend of 2008 in a holding room in Heathrow. These two seemingly disparate stories gain resonance as their perspectives interact and overlap, with yet new implications for their relationship revealed in an unexpected coda.
A stunning debut from a rising literary star, Asymmetry is an urgent, important, and truly original work that will captivate any listener while also posing arresting questions about the very nature of fiction itself.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Brian on 02-24-18
Leaving a Doll's House, again
This novel was powerful, quiet, and more than the sum of its parts. I enjoyed it more knowing some of the biographical background for the first section. As another reviewer noted, the first part can be hard to follow because of the insertion of other texts and perspectives (and maybe the narrator could have offset these sections better), but you'll figure it out all right. It took me a couple of hours to get into this novel, but it was worth it.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful