Waxwings: A novel

by Jonathan Raban

Hardcover, 2003




Pantheon (2003), 288 pages


Set in Seattle at the turn of the millennium, when the high-tech Gold Rush threatens to overwhelm the actual world with its myriad virtual alternatives, two immigrants are drawn here by more traditional versions of the American Dream.

Media reviews

What he likes doing is blending genres, confounding categories. Fiction, non-fiction, travel, sociology. His first major book, Soft City, mixed journalism with drama, semiotics and literary criticism. Foreign Land itself began as another travel book, a false start at what, the following year, became Coasting. What he does, he says, is "what used to be called 'human geography': writing about place - about people's place in place, and their displacement in it". His views, ironic and humane, are always acute; always illuminating. His prose - agile, musky, particular - is a treasure.

User reviews

LibraryThing member alic
a well-written description of Seattle during the heady dot-com era
LibraryThing member bobbieharv
Set very solidly in Seattle, about a guy with an ordinary life who gets falsely accused, and his growing relationship with a Chinese guy fixing his house, and lessening relationship with his wife. Much better than I've made it sound - great characters.
LibraryThing member Gateaupain
Early in the book there is reference to a box that Tom keeps full of scraps that one day he might turn into a novel. I think that this book is from Raban's scrap-box. - Different stories roughly overlapped. The book didn't finish. It just stopped. I didn't really understand the Waxwing reference (I'd bought the book for old times sake remembering Pale Fire). I enjoyed the trip of reading it tho'.… (more)




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