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9780525564126

The Promise of Elsewhere

  • ISBN 13:

    9780525564126

  • ISBN 10:

    0525564128

  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 02/25/2020
  • Publisher: Vintage Books

Note: Not guaranteed to come with supplemental materials (access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.)

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Summary

This poignant, comic novel follows a Midwestern professor who--in the face of a crumbling marriage and a medical condition that may rob him of his sight--decides to set out on the Journey of a Lifetime.

Louie Hake is forty-three and teaches architectural history at a third-rate college in Michigan. His second marriage is collapsing, and he's facing a potentially disastrous medical diagnosis. In an attempt to fend off what has become a soul-crushing existential crisis, he decides to treat himself to a tour of the world's most breathtaking architectural sites. Perhaps not surprisingly, Louie gets waylaid on his very first stop in Rome--ludicrously, spectacularly so--and fails to reach most of his other destinations. He embarks on a doomed romance with a jilted bride celebrating her ruined marriage plans alone in London. And in the Arctic he finds that turf houses and aluminum sheds don't amount to much of an architectural tradition. But it turns out that there's another sort of architecture there: icebergs the size of cathedrals, bobbing beside a strange and wondrous landscape. It soon becomes clear that Louie's grand journey is less about where his wanderings have taken him and more about where his past encounters with romance have not. Whether pursuing his first wife, or his estranged current wife, or the older woman he kissed just once a quarter-century ago, Louie reveals himself to be endearing, deeply touching, wonderfully ridiculous . . . and destined to find love in all the wrong places.

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