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At Home with Literati: Daphne Merkin & Nessa Rapoport

We're pleased to welcome Daphne Merkin to our At Home with Literati Series in support of 22 Minutes of Unconditional Love. She'll be joined in conversation by Nessa Rapoport.

Click here to join the webinar event on 7/8.

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About the book:  A harrowing, compulsively readable novel about breaking free of sexual obsession

A novel of unsurpassed candor, punctuated by bold ruminations on love, marriage, family, sex, gender, and relationships, 22 Minutes of Unconditional Love depicts one woman's psychological descent into sexual captivity. This is the story of the extremes to which she will go to achieve erotic bliss--and of her struggle to regain her soul.

As Daphne Merkin's audacious new novel opens, a wife and mother looks back at the moment when her life as a young book editor is upended by a casual encounter with an intriguing man who seems to intuit her every thought. Convinced she's found the one, Judith Stone succumbs to the push and pull of her sexual entanglement with Howard Rose, constantly seeking his attention and approval. That is, until she realizes that beneath his erotic obsession with her, Howard is intent on obliterating any sense of self she possesses. As Merkin writes, his was "the allure of remoteness, affection edged in ice." Escaping Howard's grasp--and her own perverse enjoyment of being under his control--will test the limits of Judith's capacity to resist the siren call of submission.

Narrated by Judith in a time before the #MeToo movement, 22 Minutes of Unconditional Love charts the persistent hold the past has on us and the way it shapes our present.

Daphne Merkin is the author of five books: two novels, 22 Minutes of Unconditional Love (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2020 and Picador, 2021) and Enchantment (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1986), which won the Edward Lewis Wallant Award for the best new work of fiction based on a Jewish theme; it was reprinted by Picador in July 2020 with a foreword by Vivian Gornick. Her memoir, This  Close to Happy: A Reckoning with Depression (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2018) received a front-page review in the New York Times Book Review. She has also published two collections of essays: Dreaming of Hitler: Passions & Provocations (1997) and The Fame Lunches: On Wounded Icons, Money, Sex, The Brontes, and the Importance of Handbags, which was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2014.  As a former staff writer for The New Yorker, Merkin's cultural criticism frequently appears in The New York Times Book Review & Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Bookforum, New York Review of Books, The New Republic, Departures, Elle, Travel + Leisure, Tablet, and many other publications. Merkin has taught writing at the 92nd Street Y, Marymount Manhattan College, Hunter College and Columbia University’s MFA program. She lives in New York City and gives private writing classes.
Nessa Rapoport is the author of two novels, Evening, published in fall 2020, and Preparing for Sabbath; and a collection of prose poems, A Woman’s Book of Grieving. Her essays and stories have appeared in The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, and have been widely anthologized. She was awarded a grant by the Canada Council for the Arts for her memoir of family and place, House on the River.
Event date: 
Thursday, July 8, 2021 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
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22 Minutes of Unconditional Love: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250798657
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador - July 6th, 2021

Enchantment: A Novel Cover Image
By Daphne Merkin, Vivian Gornick (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9780374140397
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Picador - July 14th, 2020

This Close to Happy: A Reckoning with Depression Cover Image
Email or call 734-585-5567 for price
ISBN: 9781250159298
Availability: Special Order
Published: Picador - February 27th, 2018

Evening Cover Image
ISBN: 9781640094086
Availability: In Stock at Publisher - Usually Available in 1-5 Days
Published: Counterpoint LLC - September 1st, 2020