Lionel Essrog, a.k.a. the Human Freakshow, is a victim of Tourette's syndrome (an uncontrollable urge to shout out nonsense, touch every surface in reach, rearrange objects). Local tough guy Frank Minna hires the adolescent Lionel and three other orphans from St Vincent's Home for Boys and grooms them to become the Minna Men, a fly-by-night detective-agency-cum-limoservice. Then one terrible day Frank is murdered, and Lionel must become a real detective. With crackling dialogue, a dazzling evocation of place, and a plot which mimics Tourette's itself in its freshness and capacity to shock, Motherless Brooklyn is a bravura performance: funny, tense, touching, and extravagant.
Jonathan Lethem was born in New York and attended Bennington College. He is the author of the novels Gun, with Occasional Music, Amnesia Moon, As She Climbed Across the Table, Girl in Landscape and Motherless Brooklyn, as well as a collection of stories, The Wall of the Sky, the Wall of the Eye. Film rights for Amnesia Moon have been bought by David Lynch, whilst Edward Norton has bought the rights for Motherless Brooklyn. Lethem was described by Newsweek as one of its '100 People for the New Century'. Jonathan Lethem currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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