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Author: Douglas Preston

Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN: 9781784745462

RRP: 34.99

Synopsis

Led by Margaret Atwood and Douglas Preston, a star-studded collection of writers come together to create a dazzlingly original, multi-voiced novel

A BBC, Financial Times and Cosmopolitan What to Read in 2024 pick

Set in a New York apartment building, Fourteen Days is an irresistibly propulsive novel with an unusual twist- each character in this diverse, eccentric cast of neighbours has been secretly written by a different, major literary voice – from Margaret Atwood and John Grisham to Emma Donoghue and Celeste Ng.

One week into lockdown, the tenants of a run-down apartment building in Manhattan have begun to gather on the rooftop each evening and tell stories. With each passing night, more and more neighbours gather, bringing chairs and milk crates and overturned pails. Gradually the tenants – some of whom have barely spoken to each other before now – become real neighbours.

A dazzling, heartwarming and ultimately surprising narrative, Fourteen Days is an ode to the power of storytelling and human connection.

Includes writing from– Charlie Jane Anders, Margaret Atwood, Jennine Capo Crucet, Pat Cummings, Joseph Cassara, Angie Cruz, Sylvia Day, Emma Donoghue, Dave Eggers, Diana Gabaldon, Tess Gerritsen, John Grisham, Maria Hinojosa, Mira Jacob, Erica Jong, CJ Lyons, Celeste Ng, Tommy Orange, Mary Pope Osborne, Doug Preston, Alice Randall, Caroline Randall, Ishmael Reed, Roxana Robinson, Nelly Rosario, James Shapiro, Hampton Sides, R.L. Stine, Nafissa Thompson-Spires, Monique Truong, Scott Turow, Luis Alberto Urrea, Rachel Vail, Weike Wang, DeShawn Charles Winslow, Meg Wolitzer

Margaret Atwood (External Editor)
Margaret Atwood is the author of more than fifty books of fiction, poetry and critical essays. Her novels include Cat’s Eye, The Robber Bride, Alias Grace, The Blind Assassin and the MaddAddam trilogy. Her 1985 classic, The Handmaid’s Tale, was followed in 2019 by a sequel, The Testaments, which was a global number one bestseller and shared the Booker Prize. In 2020 she published Dearly, her first collection of poetry for a decade, and in 2022 Burning Questions, a collection of essays, was a Sunday Times bestseller.

Atwood has won numerous awards including the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Imagination in Service to Society, the Franz Kafka Prize, the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade, the PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. In 2019 she was made a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour for services to literature. She has also worked as a cartoonist, illustrator, librettist, playwright and puppeteer. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

Douglas Preston (External Editor)
Douglas Preston has published 39 books of fiction and nonfiction, of which 32 have been New York Times bestsellers, some reaching the #1 position. Two of his novels, co-written with Lincoln Child, were chosen in a National Public Radio poll of readers as being among the 100 greatest thrillers ever written. His recent nonfiction book, The Lost City of the Monkey God, was named a notable book of the year by the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and National Geographic magazine. In addition to books, Preston writes about archaeology and paleontology for the New Yorker Magazine. He worked as an editor for the American Museum of Natural History in New York and taught nonfiction writing at Princeton University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards in the U.S. and Europe, and he served as president of the Authors Guild from 2019 to 2023.

Fourteen days edited by Margaret Atwood and Douglas Preston

 

READ OUR REVIEW

I was not entirely sure whether I was yet ready to read a novel set amid the worst days of the pandemic in New York. However, when you are offered a reading experience featuring a line-up of some of the most extraordinarily talented writers, how could I resist?

There are 36 American and Canadian authors responsible for the stories in Fourteen Days and part of the allure is that no authors are by-lined in the body of the novel. You must look up who wrote what in the list at the end. 

The action takes place on the roof of Fernsby Arms, a rundown apartment building on New York’s Lower East Side, where the residents gather each evening to bang pots and pans to cheer on and applaud the pandemic frontline workers and first responders. As the pandemic progresses and the city empties, as those rich enough to escape desert their luxury penthouses for their houses in the Hamptons, the rooftop gatherings become a place of refuge. As the novel progresses, more and more residents start to wander up to the space, bringing their own chairs and beverage of choice. 

The price of entry to the gathering is you must have a story to share and the characters and stories being shared are as richly diverse as the authors who penned them. The story threads are cleverly woven together through the narrative of the building’s super, who has inherited a ‘bible’ of sorts from the previous super and who, each night, faithfully transcribes that evening’s story into the tome.

The residents’ stories are happy and sad, heartbreaking, full of angst, surprising and triumphant, and I found myself increasingly invested in their lives and loves as I raced through each chapter, eager to discover more.

COVID-times were such a surreal period for all of us across the globe, and this collection of tales reflects the best of the creative response to this unforgettable experience and is a testament to the power of storytelling to find the light in the darkness. 

Reviewed by Maryanne Vagg

 

ABOUT THE EDITORS

Margaret Atwood authorMargaret Atwood is the author of more than 50 books of fiction, poetry and critical essays.Her novels include Cat’s Eye, The Robber Bride, Alias Grace, The Blind Assassin and the MaddAddam trilogy. Her 1985 classic, The Handmaid’s Tale, was followed in 2019 by a sequel, The Testaments, which was a global number one bestseller and shared the Booker Prize.

In 2020 she published Dearly, her first collection of poetry for a decade, and in 2022 Burning Questions, a collection of essays, was a Sunday Times bestseller. Atwood has won numerous awards including the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Imagination in Service to Society, the Franz Kafka Prize, the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade, the PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

In 2019 she was made a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour for services to literature. She has also worked as a cartoonist, illustrator, librettist, playwright and puppeteer. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

Douglas Preston, authorDouglas Preston has published 39 books of fiction and nonfiction, of which 32 have been New York Times bestsellers, some reaching the #1 position.

Two of his novels, co-written with Lincoln Child, were chosen in a National Public Radio poll of readers as being among the 100 greatest thrillers ever written. His recent nonfiction book, The Lost City of the Monkey God, was named a notable book of the year by the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and National Geographic magazine. In addition to books, Preston writes about archaeology and paleontology for the New Yorker Magazine.

He worked as an editor for the American Museum of Natural History in New York and taught nonfiction writing at Princeton University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards in the U.S. and Europe, and he served as president of the Authors Guild from 2019 to 2023.

Visit Douglas Preston’s website

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