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The Book of Form and Emptiness

Hardcover Book
Publisher: 
Penguin Canada
 | 
September, 2021
ISBN:
9780670070176
Quantity: 
1
$34.95 CAD
Publisher’s Description: 

A brilliantly inventive new novel about loss, growing up, and our relationship with things, by the Booker Prize-finalist author ofA Tale for the Time Being

One year after the death of his beloved musician father, thirteen-year-old Benny Oh begins to hear voices. The voices belong to the things in his housea sneaker, a broken Christmas ornament, a piece of wilted lettuce. Although Benny doesn't understand what these things are saying, he can sense their emotional tone; some are pleasant, a gentle hum or coo, but others are snide, angry and full of pain. When his mother, Annabelle, develops a hoarding problem, the voices grow more clamorous.

At first, Benny tries to ignore them, but soon the voices follow him outside the house, onto the street and at school, driving him at last to seek refuge in the silence of a large public library, where objects are well-behaved and know to speak in whispers. There, Benny discovers a strange new world. He falls in love with a mesmerizing street artist with a smug pet ferret, who uses the library as her performance space. He meets a homeless philosopher-poet, who encourages him to ask important questions and find his own voice amongst the many.

And he meets his very own Booka talking thingwho narrates Bennys life and teaches him to listen to the things that truly matter.

With its blend of sympathetic characters, riveting plot, and vibrant engagement with everything from jazz, to climate change, to our attachment to material possessions,The Book of Form and Emptinessis classic Ruth Ozekibold, wise, poignant, playful, humane and heartbreaking.

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