Vintage Contemporaries

The Fortress of Solitude

Publisher: Vintage
The Fortress of Solitude is the story of Dylan Ebdus growing up white and motherless in downtown Brooklyn in the 1970s. It’s a neighborhood where the entertainments include muggings along with games of stoopball. In that world, Dylan has one friend, a black teenager, also motherless, named Mingus Rude. As Lethem follows the knitting and unraveling of their friendship, he creates an overwhelmingly rich and emotionally gripping canvas of race and class, superheros, gentrification, funk, hip-hop, graffiti tagging, loyalty, and memory. The Fortress of Solitude is the first great urban coming of age novel to appear in years.

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FROM CHAPTER 7

...It was entirely possible that one song could destroy your life. Yes, musical doom could fall on a lone human form and crush it like a bug. The song, that song, was sent from somewhere else to find you, to pick the scab of your whole existence. The song was your personal shitty fate,...
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READING GUIDE

NATIONAL BESTSELLER
A New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice

“Magnificent. . . . A massively ambitious, profoundly accomplished novel.” —San Francisco Chronicle

The introduction, discussion questions, and suggestions for further reading that follow are designed to enliven...
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PRAISE FOR

“Magnificent. . . . [A] massively ambitious, profoundly accomplished novel.” – San Francisco Chronicle

"Glorious, chaotic, raw. . . . One of the richest, messiest, most ambitious, most interesting novels of the year. . . . Lethem grabs and captures 1970s New York City, and he brings to it a story worth telling." --Time

"A tour de force . . . Belongs to a venerable New York literary tradition that stretches back through Go Tell it On the Mountain, A Walker in the City, and Call it Sleep." --The New York Times

“The finest novel of the year, by far, and likely of the past five. . . . Better than a movie, better than a symphony, better than a play, and better than a painting, because it is all of them.” –Austin Chronicle