Saturday, May 12, 2007

Pg. 69: Tara Ison's "The List"

Today's feature at the Page 69 Test: Tara Ison's The List.

About the book, from the publisher:

The List is an irreverent, sophisticated take on the classic breakup story. In fierce and exquisite prose, Tara Ison has written an astonishing story of love and hate.

Isabel is finishing medical school and destined to become a brilliant heart surgeon. Al is a video store clerk, a one-hit-wonder director whose first and only film became a cult classic. Their electric, passionate, and deeply maddening relationship can't possibly work. Tired of endlessly coming together and breaking up, they make a list of ten things to do before they finally say good-bye. But after a few perfect dates the list takes a dark turn, and their plan spirals out of control as they realize they would rather destroy each other than let go.

Among the praise for The List:

"The List is both wise and wicked about love: why it lasts or doesn't, and what's to be done about it. Tara Ison limns her characters' choices with dark precision and wit."
Meg Wolitzer, author of The Position and The Wife

"The List is visceral, honest, and intensely readable; Ison builds two complex, memorable characters, and then embraces their layers and contradictions, both alone and together."
Aimee Bender, author of The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, Willful Creatures

"The List is one fast-paced, word-drunk, film-obsessed, side-splitting roller-coaster: a screwball comedy, an anti-romance romance, the quintessential LA novel. Ison is some kind of genius."
Brad Kessler, author of Birds in Fall

Visit Tara Ison's website and read an excerpt from The List.

Tara Ison's first novel, A Child out of Alcatraz, was a Finalist for the 1997 Los Angeles Times Book Awards, "Best First Fiction." Her short fiction, essays and book reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in Tin House, The Kenyon Review,, The Mississippi Review, LA Weekly, the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine and Book Review, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Chicago Tribune, the San Jose Mercury News, and numerous anthologies. She is also the co-writer of the movie Don't Tell Mom The Babysitter's Dead.

Read about her six favorite books that make the most of lists.

The Page 69 Test: Tara Ison's The List.

--Marshal Zeringue