January 2010 Good Housekeeping selection.
The interplay between Marcus Kidder and Katya Spivak is powered by dubious intention from the moment of their first encounter. He is a 68-year-old member of the established rich in refined Bayhead Harbor; she is 16, a holiday nanny with a South Jersey accent, an absent father who gambles and a mother who drinks. He wears cantaloupe-coloured leisure trousers and has silver hair sprouting from the top of his pressed shirts; she is fresh with youth and looking for adventure. But what price is she prepared to pay, and what exactly is in his mind as he encourages her to let him paint her portrait? Not as you think. Wondrously, Joyce Carol Oates spins the web.
Fifteen-year-old Katya Spivak is out for a walk on the gracious streets of Bayhead Harbor, New Jersey, with her two summer babysitting charges when she is approached by silver-haired, elegant Marcus Kidder. At first his interest in her seems harmless, even pleasant; like his name, a sort of gentle joke. His beautiful home, the children's books that he has written, his classical music, the fine art in his study, his lavish gifts to her: Mr. Kidder's life couldn't be more different from Katya's drab working class existence back home - or more enticing. But by degrees, almost imperceptibly, something changes, and posing for Mr Kidder's new painting isn't the light-hearted endeavour it once was. What does he really want from her? And how far will he go to get it? This spare, chilling novel shows Joyce Carol Oates at the height of her powers as a literary storyteller.
Publication date: 07/01/2010
Publisher: Quercus Publishing Plc
|Publication date:||7th January 2010|
|Author:||Joyce Carol Oates|
|Publisher:||Quercus Publishing Plc|
Joyce Carol Oates, a recipient of the National Book Award , is one of the most highly respected novelists, critic, playwright, poet and author of short stories. Her most recent novels include ‘Break Heart Blues’ and ‘Man Crazy’. She is the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Princeton University. Her highly acclaimed last novel ‘Blonde’, published in 2000, was shortlisted for the National Book Award. Author photo © Marion EttlingerMore About Joyce Carol Oates