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The Lonely Polygamist


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'A wry, sympathetic portrait of a spectacularly dysfunctional family' New Yorker From the author of the legendary novel The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint.

About the Author

Brady Udall is the author of Letting Loose the Hounds, The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint, an international bestseller, and the newly released The Lonely Polygamist. His work has appeared in The Paris Review, Playboy, GQ and Esquire, and his stories and essays have been featured on National Public Radio's This American Life. He teaches in the MFA program at Boise State University, and lives in Boise, Idaho and Teasdale, Utah with his wife and children. His great-great grandfather, David King Udall, was a polygamist. His second wife, Ida Hunt Udall, was his great-great grandmother.


Udall's long-awaited novel (after The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint) depicts a lively, humorous, and sometimes tragic picture of Golden Richards, his four demanding wives, and his 28 children. They are an unruly Mormon clan, scattered among three separate houses in rural Utah. Richards, a hapless graying contractor with a limp and a sinus condition, supports them with his less-than-successful construction business. To avoid bankruptcy, he takes a job in Nevada, a project he tells everyone is a senior citizens' home but in fact it is a bordello. That's only one of Golden's secrets. The sister wives hold weekly summits to schedule Golden's visits from wife to wife, house to house. He doesn't have a home of his own, so he frequently takes refuge in a playhouse built for a daughter who died in a tragic accident. In trying to help, he often makes things worse, but he valiantly makes one last effort to bring harmony to his fractious family. VERDICT Udall observes with a keen eye for the ridiculous while showing compassion. Think of the zany theatrics of Carl Hiaasen paired with the family drama of Elizabeth Berg. Enthusiastically recommended-Donna Bettencourt, Mesa Cty. P.L., Grand Junction, CO Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

"Udall demonstrates a wonderful ability to move the reader one way or the other. He is a brilliant comic writer, and this novel is full of laugh-out-loud moments and running jokes. But he is equally adept at heartbreaking tragedy. Combining the two superbly here, he has recreated the terrible wonder and wonderful terror of family life, in a novel that's not larger than life, but just as large, as difficult, as funny and as poignant as everyday life itself" -- Doug Johnstone * Sunday Herald *
"It's funny, but not simply a comic noel; Udall has some wonderful observations about the dynamics of family life" * The Times *
"An exceptional tale of an exceptional family." * The New York Times *
"A dark, funny and insightful probe into the ways we can be lonely even when surrounded" * Sunday Telegraph, Australia *
"Memorable... Shining above all in this joyful celebration of communal living is Rusty, the misfit whose explosive fate will have profound effects on the whole, enormous family." -- Ross Gilfillan * Daily Mail *

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