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Phantom Pain

(2003)
A novel by

 
Awards
International IMPAC Dublin Literary Awards Best Novel (nominee)
A black, funny novel about a once respectable writer on the make. Once a literary novelist of some respectability, now brought low by the double insult of obscurity and crippling debt, Robert G. Mehlman is a man in need of money and recognition, fast. It is, of course, to cookery writing that he turns. A practised decadent, a habitual spendthrift and a serial womaniser, he has, ostensibly, all the right qualities. But the path to fame is never a smooth one. Phantom Pain consists largely of the bitterly funny but unpublished manuscript of Mehlman's autobiography. In it, he tells the parallel stories of his decaying marriage and his puzzling affair with a woman he meets by chance and who accompanies him on the road. Their journey takes them on a chaffeur-driven, midnight run from New York to Atlantic City where they gamble away most of Mehlman's remaining funds and then north, to Albany, where his unlikely salvation, and the inspiration for his book Polish-Jewish Cuisine in 69 Recipes, lie. Framed by a son's account of his famous father, this novel-within-a-novel is a hilariously black account of a writer's fall and his subsequent rise. Phantom Pain has all the characteristic mixture of slapstick and dark despair that has made Arnon Grunberg one of the most interesting, certainly the funniest, and arguably the best Dutch writer working today.

 
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Used availability for Arnon Grunberg's Phantom Pain


See all available used copies of this book at Abebooks UK or Abebooks US
 

Hardback Editions

May 2004 : USA Hardback
thumbTitle: Phantom Pain
Author(s): Arnon Grunberg
ISBN: 1-59051-126-3 / 978-1-59051-126-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Other Press
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

Paperback Editions

April 2012 : UK Paperback
thumbTitle: Phantom Pain
Author(s): Arnon Grunberg
ISBN: 1-84655-674-0 / 978-1-84655-674-6 (UK edition)
Publisher: Harvill Secker
Availability: Amazon UK   

July 2003 : UK Paperback
thumbTitle: Phantom Pain
Author(s): Arnon Grunberg
ISBN: 0-436-20570-X / 978-0-436-20570-5 (UK edition)
Publisher: Secker
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   


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