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Family secrets, sexual explorations, art world wealth, and legacies of racism and environmental destruction collide in this novel from Lambda Award-winning author Dale Peck.
The art world falls in love with Dixie Stammers when it is discovered that not only are her pots mechanically perfect spheres, they are also identical, despite the fact that they are made entirely by hand, without benefit of a wheel, measuring device, or any other tool.
Her teenage son, Judas, is pathologically shy, and retreats into a world of anonymous sexual encounters at a roadside rest area. What he really longs for though is a relationship with one of the boys at the private school he attends. The Academy was founded by Judas’s ancestral grandfather, a nineteenth-century coal magnate. Driven by his mother’s secretive nature, Judas begins digging into his family’s history, and the Academy’s, until he unearths a series of secrets that cause him to question everything he thought he knew about his world.
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Great if you’re a philosophy PhD
This book is over the top with the philosophy, you will prob be overwhelmed if you usually like normal novels. It’s also no kind of a romance. The sexual aspects of it made me anxious for the character’s safety and sanity, without purpose honestly. His behavior and risk taking illustrates his self image and mindset in an indirect way but he doesn’t grow or heal. It leaves everything hanging in regard to him but I think part of the point is to see oneself in him and that our own thoughts lead ourselves to where we are. It’s a mess. You will love it if you are into philosophy and you will be irritated if that’s not your jam.