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Failure to Zigzag

A Novel

List Price: $16.95

March 3, 2000 | Paperback | 6 x 9, 336 Pages | ISBN 9781582430768
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"With consummate artistry and by subtle indirection, the talented author reveals courage, misery and despair through sharp, flip dialogue, evoking the reader's empathy." —Publishers Weekly

It’s southern California in the early Sixties, and Charlotte is a teenager, which is bad enough. She also has strange grandparents, with whom she lives, a schizophrenic ventriloquist alcoholic mother who appears and disappears regularly from her life, and only vague information about the father who died before Charlotte was born.

With so much craziness in the family, Charlotte figures, whether it’s “nature” or “nurture,” she’s doomed. In Failure to Zigzag, Jane Vandenburgh gracefully zigzags between hilarity and sorrow as she recounts Charlotte’s attempts to grow up and to practice “sanity as a form of revenge.”

JANE VANDENBURGH is the author of The Physics of Sunset and The Wrong Dog Dream. She lives in Point Richmond, CA.

Praise

“Vandenburgh makes a brilliant debut with this startlingly idiosyncratic, intelligent, funny and painfully moving novel… With consummate artistry and by subtle indirection, the talented author reveals courage, misery and despair through sharp, flip dialogue, evoking the reader’s empathy.” —Publishers Weekly

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