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Edgar and Lucy

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  3,441 Ratings  ·  640 Reviews
"I love this book." —Lena Dunham

Edgar and Lucy is a page-turning literary masterpiece—a stunning examination of family love and betrayal.

Eight-year-old Edgar Fini remembers nothing of the accident people still whisper about. He only knows that his father is gone, his mother has a limp, and his grandmother believes in ghosts. When Edgar meets a man with his own tragic sto
Hardcover, 535 pages
Published March 7th 2017 by St. Martin's Press
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Susan Zinner Interesting question! I just finished this yesterday. The narrator is an 8 year-old-boy who turns 9 and we learn that his doctor thinks he might be on…moreInteresting question! I just finished this yesterday. The narrator is an 8 year-old-boy who turns 9 and we learn that his doctor thinks he might be on the autism spectrum. He misunderstands what is going on in the adult world (as any child would), so that is realistic. If you know the second half of the plot (no spoilers), I'm not so sure that it would turn out so well in the real world. I gave it 4 stars and liked it a lot (didn't love it).(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Hal Issen
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)

Community Reviews

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Angela M
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
The burden of grief for a mother losing her son, a wife losing her husband, a son losing his father he hardly remembers, a father losing a son through horrible circumstances. This is a hauntingly intense story of family dysfunction and mental illness and most of all love. It's edgy and sometimes eerie with moments of horror but hope, moments where you will laugh and cry, and characters I loved and hated at the same time . I have an affinity to young narrators or when the narrative point of view ...more
Nov 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is about a family that has probably the worst case of bad luck I’ve ever read about. There were times I wished I could read with my eyes closed, and yet I was compelled to read every word. The story is dark and nearly every dream becomes broken; every possibility fizzles out of sight; every fantasy turns into a nightmare; every hope is delayed or destroyed.

Still, nature – and life – abhors a vacuum so when the light side is tipped too far by the dark side, it eventually must right itse
Larry H
May 21, 2017 rated it liked it
I'd rate this 3.5 stars.

Edgar Allan Fini is an eight-year-old boy unlike any other. Because he suffers from albinism, his physical appearance is tremendously unique (a fact not quite appreciated by his bullying peers), but his heart and his mind are far more advanced in many ways than most kids his age. Since his father's death when he was a baby—an event no one speaks of—he lives with his mother, Lucy, and his beloved grandmother, Florence, with whom he has a special connection.

"Even those who
May 16, 2017 added it
Shelves: fiction
5, no holds barred, stars for each and every page. At over 500 pages, Edgar and Lucy is a commitment but don’t let the numbers intimidate you. Victor Lodato’s words sing and you’ll be turning pages so rapidly, you’ll be finished, sorry that it has come to an end.

The Hook It could have been the title, Edgar and Lucy lacking pizzazz, that initially didn’t grab my attention. It might have been the somewhat bland cover that does make sense after reading the book. The positive reviews started didn’t
Feb 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing

4.5 Stars rounded up

Having a life meant having a story. Even at eight, Edgar knew this. What he didn’t know was his own beginning. Newborn brains were mushy. If you wanted to know how your life had started, you had to get this information from other people. But what if these people were liars?

Edgar was born with albinism, giving him what some referred to as an angelic appearance along with his slight build, and with his white hair on the longer side. As a result, some of the
Jul 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I appreciate this book - but I felt 'too full' with too 'many' gorgeous descriptions, in the same way I can feel if I
load my plate on Thanksgiving with too many delicious foods. All together -it's too much.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Edgar and Lucy, what can I say? I loved the writing. I loved the beginning. I loved Edgar and his grandmother Florence. I was heading to an enthusiastic 5 stars, and then you floundered a bit, and then you got solidly back on track at the end. So I've landed on a sincere 4 star rating. Spoilers are a real risk here, so here is an attempt at a few non-spoilery thoughts:
-The book opens with 8 year old albino Edgar, who lives with his grandmother Florence and mother Lucy. The story goes back in tim
Diane S ☔
Mar 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lor
3.5 From the beginning I just loved Edgar, an eight year old albino boy, the light of his grandmother Florence's eye. Their relationship is so special and tender. His young mother Lucy, scarred by her past and the traumatic death of her husband is not much of a mother and is very self centered. Things will change quickly for our little group and the reader is taken on what is at times an intense emotional journey.

It is a journey in other ways as well, as we learn the back stories of our characte
Thank you, St. Martin's Press for sending me, "Edgar and Lucy" by Victor Lodato, in exchange for an honest review.

THIS. NOVEL. WAS. EVERYTHING. Victor Lodato is one hell of a writer. His writing style is so beautiful, rich, vivid, and completely magical. I was captivated with the story of an 8 year-old albino boy named, Edgar from the very first page. There's this gothic/old-fashioned undertone even though the novel is set in present day. I really liked it. I went into "Edgar and Lucy" not knowi
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I can't wait to read this despite the glowing review from Lena Dunham, whose opinion I couldn't care less about.

After reading:
I loved this! Such an engaging story with unique and memorable characters. The lovely writing was just icing on the cake!
Terri Jacobson
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literary-fiction
Edgar Allan Fini is 8-years old and lives with his mother, Lucy, and grandmother, Florence, in a house in New Jersey. Edgar is an unusual child, and incidentally, he is an albino. His father is dead, but Edgar is unclear about the details. His mother is an inconsistent parent and Edgar gets most of his care from Florence. He loves both women deeply.

Edgar and Lucy is the story of this family, how they love each other and how they hurt each other, how they grieve and how they move on. It is the st
Apr 19, 2017 rated it it was ok
Well that was a very depressing book! I found it to be a great guide for dysfunctional people. It had everything in it from suicide, mental illness, abortion, sex, kidnapping, child abuse, and a young man who was an albino. As I read through the five hundred plus pages, I kept on asking myself when this book would end. It often seemed like the author kept on adding things, kind of like an addendum to an addendum. In other words, I felt this novel should have been about two hundred pages shorter. ...more
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"Having a life meant having a story". And what a story are we gifted with by Victor Lodato!
We meet Edgar (8 yrs old) and his mother Lucy. Both are scarred individuals- Edgar, physically, as he is Albino and Lucy, mentally, from her upbringing and from the loss of the love of her life- Frank, Edgar's father.
Lucy loved Frank so much that she was willing to relinquish Edgar to Florence, her mother in law. Florence is a wonderful character- hilarious, superstitious, just a perfect Italian N
Feb 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
"Learning kindness late in life was a kind of torture. The pain often came from the past, from kindness withheld. The knife was particularly sharp when those who most deserved your kindness were long gone. And unless you wanted to die of sorrow, you had to give this unspent kindness to those you loved less."

MY review for the Chicago Tribune:

A poet, a playwright and a novelist, not to mention the winner of a Guggenheim and a recipient of a fellowship from
Dec 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I predict that this book will be nominated for awards. It's that good.
Melissa Crytzer Fry
Oct 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If I were to use one word to describe how I felt throughout this book? Engaged. And by that, I don’t mean this is a rip-roaring, fast-paced thriller of a book that left me jittery from a frenetic pace (But my heart was in my throat and my senses were firing … for other reasons).

What I mean is that I was emotionally engaged -- hooked-- by the first sentence, and the few after it: Having a life meant having a story. Even at eight, Edgar knew this. What he didn’t know was his own beginning. Newbo
Apr 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
This novel will most certainly be on the best Literary Fiction of 2017 lists. The story is described as epic in scope on its jacket cover, and I concur. Domestic themes of love, loss, grief, forgiveness, and hope are threaded into this story of the human condition. The story moved me, and will be one that stays with me.

Author Victor Lodato is a novelist and a playwright and uses his skills fantastically through the novel. The prose is beautiful and stunning. Furthermore, there is comedy mixed in
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literary-fiction
How many languages can you spell love? I would shout it from the rooftops exclaiming my adoration for this novel about a special little eight year old and his family. I could tell from the very first page that this was a novel that I was going to savor and enjoy. Eight year old Edgar is an unusual albino child born into a "messy" family with complicated love issues. Lodato has created a child with such wonder,imagination ,humor and pathos that I wanted to grab him and hold him tightly to my ches ...more
I found myself comparing Lodato's style to that of Jeffrey Eugenides whose literary novels also burst with odd characters, circular plots, deeply complicated emotional relationships and unusual perspectives on all of the above.

With such a meandering style, patience is required of the reader to allow the author to gather all the detail and pull it into a grand denouement, tying up all the tantalizing bits dropped along the way. I was patient. I waited.

Unfortunately, I was never moved by any of
I had never heard of this author or his book until a reading group selected it. I am so glad they did! I loved every page.

Victor Lodato is a playwright, poet and novelist, an occasional short story and essay writer. He has won awards and gotten a ton of writing fellowships. A hardworking writer, he was born and raised in New Jersey, the state where I grew up. This is his second novel.

I loved the characters, even the "unlikable" ones of which there are many. I loved the oddness of the story whic
Helen Simonson
Mar 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This tale gradually exerts a fiendish grip on the reader. A small strange boy in peril, with nothing but his wide-eyed innocence and faith in the world to save him. A flawed but loving mother overwhelmed... Beautifully written by Victor Lodato - whom I had the pleasure of meeting at a recent New York City reading.
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This literary masterpiece can be mostly described as a love story. Well, not the romantic type of love. Edgar and Lucy is a book about kindness, about the endless humanly love that can even change fate.

At the center of this epic novel is a precious eight years old child, Edgar. Edgar lives with his grandmother Florence and his mother Lucy. Florence is Edgar’s paternal mother. Both Florence and Lucy are Edgar’s only remaining relatives except for a maternal grandfather who couldn’t care less abou
Apr 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: booktopia-2017
I look forward to meeting the author in May and discussing this book with other Booktopians. Plenty to talk about.
Nancy Brisson
Jul 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Edgar and Lucy by Victor Lodato is a story of mental illness so severe that even love and medication cannot prevail. It is a story of grief that makes a person forget all the rules that humans should heed. And it is story of parenting both neglectful and obsessed; the story of a boy so small and pale he seems to have been born an albino child; a child so dependent on his grandmother, Florence, that when she dies he is too bereft to heed the protective advice routinely offered to children.- “neve ...more
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As I was reading Edgar & Lucy by Victor Lodato, I realized it’s been a while since I’ve read such an excellent book. I loved this book from the very beginning to the very end. It’s a long book that you don’t mind at all that’s it’s long, as a matter of fact, I would have gladly kept reading had there been more story to tell. But like the perfect book that it is, it ended on just the right note and left me completely fulfilled.

The title of the book refers to Edgar and his mother Lucy. Lucy i
Jun 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
What terrible luck the Finis had. It was like a curse from a fairy tale; it never ended. Suicides and bridges and a child with marble skin. And though Netty never liked to think that anyone had worse luck than she and Henry, the truth was, the Finis did. They had very peculiar stars.

I didn't know what to expect from Edgar and Lucy (and I totally recommend going into this read cold; the less you know beforehand, the better), and still, it was a constant surprise to me: the plot, the characters,
Jo Ann
Mar 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
While I certainly did not care for some of the characters in this book, I loved 8 year old albino Edgar Fini...who could not care for this precocious, in many ways, and clueless in other ways, boy who placed "crackers, water, a paper napkin, and a PINECONE (my caps) on a sick tray? Edgar's adventures with his father, mother Lucy of the title, loving yet smothering grandmother, and other characters you'll just have to meet, are adventures most of us would not care to experience. Lodato crafts som ...more
"Learning kindness late in life was a kind of torture. The pain often came from the past, from kindnesses withheld. The knife was particularly sharp when those who most deserved your kindness were long gone. And unless you want to die of sorrow, you had to give this unspent kindness to those you loved less."


I'm not even positive where to begin. This book was not what I would call a pleasant read, but that was because I was so fully immersed into this world, so tensed by its occurrences, that
Mar 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: booktopia-2017
I don't know where to start! I loved this book. The writing style is just amazing with characters so layered. Edgar stole my heart and Florence will be with me forever. A story of love, ghosts, fear and loss. I cannot wait to talk about this and meet Victor at Booktopia!!
Linda Lpp
Sep 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is one thick book! But am finding it interesting. Lots of depressed, pathetic people plodding along in their life. Hopefully someone or something will lighten the mood. Soon.
Upon reaching the final pages, if I was the weepy type, the tears would be flowing. All the individuals in the story had realistic quirks and human sides you can relate to. The author managed to intricately weave the relationships of generations of families and friends from beginning to end of the book.
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Victor Lodato is a playwright and novelist. His book, Mathilda Savitch, was hailed by The New York Times as “a Salingeresque wonder of a first novel” and was deemed a “Best Book of the Year” by The Christian Science Monitor, Booklist, and The Globe and Mail. The novel won the PEN USA Award for Fiction and the Barnes & Noble Discover Prize, and has been published in sixteen countries.

Victor is
More about Victor Lodato

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“Even those who loved you best were bound to find the flaws if they stared long enough.” 3 likes
“Learning kindness late in life was a kind of torture. The pain often came from the past, form kindnesses withheld. The knife was particularly sharp when those who most deserved your kindness were long gone. And unless you wanted to die of sorrow, you had to give this unspent kindness to those you loved less.” 3 likes
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