book cover of Lake City

Lake City

(2019)
A novel by

 
 
Lake City is a darkly funny and extremely relevant debut novel about American inequality and moral authority, featuring a sad-sack antihero who takes way too long to grow up. When he finally does, the results are beautiful, and the book ultimately becomes an elegy for a now-gone Seattle, and a lesson in how the place we’re from never fully lets us go.” —Anthony Doerr, author of All the Light We Cannot See

Hunkered down in his childhood bedroom in Seattle's worn-out Lake City neighborhood, idealistic but self-serving striver Lane Bueche licks his wounds and hatches a plot to win back his estranged Manhattanite wife.

He discovers a precarious path forward when he is contracted by a wealthy adoptive couple to seduce and sabotage a troubled birth mother from his neighborhood. Lane soon finds himself in a zero-sum game between the families as he straddles two cultures, classes, and worlds. Until finally, with the well-being of the toddler at stake, Lane must choose between wanting to do the right thing (if he could only figure out what that is) and reclaiming his idea of privilege.

"Snarky social commentary on the world of Seattle have-nots." —Kirkus Reviews

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"There are so many reasons to admire Thomas Kohnstamm’s astonishing debut novel: his astute and cutting depiction of urban gentrification, his pitch-perfect evocation of a young man’s endless ricochet between self-aggrandizement and self-hatred, his vision of Seattle’s grungy underside that is so richly related one can almost smell the cedar and cannabis wafting off the pages. And yet, it is Kohnstamm’s innate storytelling verve - his taut, noirish knack for plotting and his ability to make the reader laugh, cringe, worry, and feel for his characters all at once - that makes Lake City truly unputdownable." - Stefan Merrill Block

"Lake City is a darkly funny and extremely relevant debut novel about American inequality and moral authority, featuring a sad-sack antihero who takes way too long to grow up. When he finally does, the results are beautiful, and the book ultimately becomes an elegy for a now-gone Seattle, and a lesson in how the place we’re from never fully lets us go." - Anthony Doerr

"Kohnstamm delivers a blistering, clear-eyed, and surefooted debut novel about the perils and pitfalls of misdirected ambition. More than that, Lake City is a hilarious and sneakily incisive examination of the cultural tensions, and widening class divides that simmer on the fringes of an increasingly homogenized Seattle?or San Francisco, or Brooklyn, or Los Angeles, or any other American city in the throes of affluenza and gentrification." - Jonathan Evison

"Kohnstamm knowingly illuminates the underbelly of Seattle - a place of beater cars, strip clubs, and a subpar hypermarket - far from the hipsters and gentrifiers. Hilarious as it is cutting, Lake City offers an all-too-insightful critique of clashing classes and misguided ideas of success." - Shari Goldhagen

"Kohnstamm has written a novel of Pale Male Fail above and below the poverty line, a Dickensian tale of a fledgling philosopher who’s taken flight from trailer parks to Gramercy Park and then . . . had his wings clipped. This is the American Dream cut thin on a grocery store meat slicer, laced with oxy, stolen booze, and an unfinished dissertation. It’s a rotgut to Dom Pérignon rainbow, which is to say: Lake City is a crucial black comedy about the myths of money and happiness, and whether nature, nurture, or AmEx rears a better man." - Maria Dahvana Headley


Used availability for Thomas Kohnstamm's Lake City

Paperback Editions

January 2019 : USA Paperback
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Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
ISBN: 1-64009-142-4 / 978-1-64009-142-9 (USA edition)
Publisher: Counterpoint
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

January 2019 : Audio CD
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Title: Lake City
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
ISBN: 1-982600-81-0 / 978-1-982600-81-5
Publisher: Blackstone Pub
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


January 2019 : Audio CD
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Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
ISBN: 1-982600-82-9 / 978-1-982600-82-2
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


January 2019 : MP3 CD
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Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
ISBN: 1-982600-83-7 / 978-1-982600-83-9
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


January 2019 : Canada Audio edition
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Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Availability: Amazon CA   


January 2019 : UK Audio edition
thumb

Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

January 2019 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Lake City: A Novel
Author(s): Thomas Kohnstamm
Publisher: Counterpoint
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU