The Candy House: A Novel (Paperback)

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The Candy House: A Novel By Jennifer Egan Cover Image

The Candy House: A Novel (Paperback)


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April 2022 Indie Next List

“Egan weaves together these seemingly disparate characters and storylines into a stunning ending. The Candy House is about family, connection, legacy, technology, and so much more. It is her best work yet.”
— Ariana Paliobagis, Country Bookshelf, Bozeman, MT

Staff Reviews

This NYT's top 10 book of 2022 is a follow up to Egan's A Visit from the Goon Squad. You don't need to have read Goon Squad before reading this, but I recommend it. If you haven't read either, read them back to back! It will give you a greater appreciation for The Candy House. 

Now, this book may sound tasty, but it doesn't have anything to do with candy. Each chapter features characters from the first book, and, like its successor, is written in a multitude of styles. The synopsis on the back will tell you The Candy House is about a technology that allows people to electronically archive their memories. But this is not some breakneck, dire Black Mirror episode (okay, except for one part). Overall, the technology serves as more of a backdrop for the main star of the plot: the characters. My favorite character, Alfred, screams every time he gets fed up with disingenuousness. 

Grab this if you're looking for a literary, strongly character-based read!

— From Clarisse



Also named one of the BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR by Vanity Fair, Time, NPR, The Guardian, Oprah Daily, Self, Vogue, The New Yorker, BBC, Vulture, and many more!


From one of the most celebrated writers of our time comes an “inventive, effervescent” (Oprah Daily) novel about the memory and quest for authenticity and human connection.

The Candy House opens with the staggeringly brilliant Bix Bouton, whose company, Mandala, is so successful that he is “one of those tech demi-gods with whom we’re all on a first name basis.” Bix is forty, with four kids, restless, and desperate for a new idea, when he stumbles into a conversation group, mostly Columbia professors, one of whom is experimenting with downloading or “externalizing” memory. Within a decade, Bix’s new technology, “Own Your Unconscious”—which allows you access to every memory you’ve ever had, and to share your memories in exchange for access to the memories of others—has seduced multitudes.

In the world of Egan’s spectacular imagination, there are “counters” who track and exploit desires and there are “eluders,” those who understand the price of taking a bite of the Candy House. Egan introduces these characters in an astonishing array of narrative styles—from omniscient to first person plural to a duet of voices, an epistolary chapter, and a chapter of tweets. Intellectually dazzling, The Candy House is also a moving testament to the tenacity and transcendence of human longing for connection, family, privacy, and love.

“A beautiful exploration of loss, memory, and history” (San Francisco Chronicle), “this is minimalist maximalism. It’s as if Egan compressed a big 19th-century novel onto a flash drive” (The New York Times).
Jennifer Egan is the author of six previous books of fiction: Manhattan Beach, winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction; A Visit from the Goon Squad, which won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award; The Keep; the story collection Emerald CityLook at Me, a National Book Award Finalist; and The Invisible Circus. Her work has appeared in The New YorkerHarper’s MagazineGrantaMcSweeney’s, and The New York Times Magazine. Her website is
Product Details ISBN: 9781476716770
ISBN-10: 1476716773
Publisher: Scribner
Publication Date: March 7th, 2023
Pages: 368
Language: English
Praise for The Candy House 

“The novel — with its prismatic plotting and ever-shifting chorus of seekers, kooks, and visionaries — feels less like a house than a honeycomb full of fantastical rooms, each one alive and thrumming with bright, weird humanity.” —Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly

"The Candy House is really an incredible feat... astonishing, even a little bewildering! Jenny is shockingly underrated. She should have the kind of fawning sycophants that dudes like Franzen and Denis Johnson do. Let the cult begin herewith!"
—James Hannaham, New York Times Book Review

“This is minimalist maximalism. It’s as if Egan compressed a big 19th-century triple-decker novel onto a flash drive… Egan goes all in on the power of storytelling and of fiction.” —Dwight Garner, The New York Times

“A brilliant demonstration of the unquantifiable pleasures of great fiction.”
—Ron Charles, The Washington Post

“Radiant… an exhilarating delight…Egan opens windows on entrancing new worlds, in which what happened depends on who’s telling the story.” —Laura Miller, Slate

“You don't have to read A Visit From the Goon Squad to love this sibling novel to Egan's stellar hit… complex and intimate.” —Good Housekeeping

“May be the smartest novel you read all year… Fiction at its best... gets at our secret selves in ways the internet can’t… Egan’s audacity is welcome.” —Mark Athitakis, USA Today
“This is a beautiful exploration of loss, memory and history, a not too subtle critique of what is lost when we live our lives online.” —Allison Arieff, The San Francisco Chronicle
“A fast-paced polyvoiced romp thru America in the grip of a sinister tech that allows others into your mind. EEK!”Margaret Atwood, author of The Handmaid's Tale and The Testaments