The Room And The Chair | Granta

  • Published: 05/05/2011
  • ISBN: 9781846272387
  • 129x20mm
  • 336 pages

The Room And The Chair

Lorraine Adams

A jet aircraft falls straight out of the sky into an island park in the heart of Washington, DC. But noone seems to have noticed. Well, almost noone … At the capital’s paper, the staff are in a frenzy, and the news, and ambition, can blind. In Washington’s other power centre, Will queasily watches videos of a beheading from Falluja while lamenting the loss of his best double-agent, eliminated by the Iranian authorities whose nuclear intentions he was reporting. But that agent, Hoseyn, might yet provide the missing pieces that will permit the jigsaw to be completed from beyond his own death …

One of the most thrilling literary novels I've read in years. Adams seems to have it all - a journalist's sharp eye, a poet's ear, a cynic's wisdom and a story-teller's flourish. A touch of DeLillo here, a bit of Elmore Leonard there, some echoes of Martha Gellhorn, but ultimately Adams has a voice all her own. This is a tough, fast and beautiful read

Colum McCann

Lorraine Adams is a singular and important American writer. The Room and the Chair establishes this without question: It is remarkable for its ambitions and its achievements. It encompasses the broadest outlines of our world

Los Angeles Times

Adams writes with precision and empathy of lives marginalized or discounted by the ambitions of superiors, by institutional imperatives and global ideologies. She understands the tragic scale of this vast struggle, and that every day, we are, all of us, more vulnerable and less valuable, and closer to being counted as casualties of one kind or another. This book tallies that cost and does so in utterly human terms.

David Simon, creator and writer of THE WIRE

The Author

Lorraine Adams was educated at Princeton and at Columbia University. She won a Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting and was a staff writer for the Washington Post for eleven years. She lives in New York City, and Harbor (Portobello, 2006) was her first novel.

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From the Same Author


Lorraine Adams

A young stowaway, Aziz, jumps into the icy waters of Boston Harbor and swims ashore. He scrabbles to find shelter with fellow immigrants, tries to live right, but quickly learns that the normal rules don’t apply to those who have no legal existence. Just as Aziz allows himself to forget the atrocities he fled back home in Algeria and to imagine a brighter future, the FBI starts taking an interest in his circle’s activities, and all assumptions – his and ours – dissolve into urgent questions: how are terrorists identified? who watches them? and how do they live in our midst and how do they evade us?

Lorraine Adams on

Essays & Memoir | The Online Edition

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Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist Lorraine Adams and Pakistani reporter Ayesha Nasir examine the life of Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-American who attempted to detonate a massive car bomb in New York’s Times Square.