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The Lost Book of Adana Moreau

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  53 ratings  ·  22 reviews
The mesmerizing story of a Latin American science fiction writer and the lives her lost manuscript unites decades later in post-Katrina New Orleans

In 1929 in New Orleans, a Dominican immigrant named Adana Moreau writes a science fiction novel titled Lost City. It is a strange and beautiful novel, set in a near future where a sixteen-year-old Dominican girl, not all that
Hardcover, 272 pages
Expected publication: February 4th 2020 by Hanover Square Press
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Natalie Jenner
Nov 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the most stunningly imaginative books I have ever read. I could just sink into the worlds within worlds that Zapata creates: worlds of brothers-in-arms, extended families, beckoning landscapes, and marvellous books so magical-sounding that one feels the very pull to distant shores that lures so many of his characters. I won't give away any of the plot, because the level of creativity here should be experienced fully fresh, from the mesmerizing first chapter ("The Dominicana May ...more
Nov 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so lucky to receive an ARC of this book. Few books make me try to find time to sit in a chair and read but Michael Zapata’s “The Lost Book of Adana Moreau” was one of them. A time jumping literary mystery with wonderfully written characters and even a pirate or two. He kept me guessing how they would all connect. It’s such an impressive debut and I can’t wait to read what Zapata writes next.
Well done!
Carolyn Nelson
Jun 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had the honor and privilege of reading the Lost Book Adana Moreau by Michael Zapata.
I’m an avid reader but horrible reviewer. I either like a book or I don’t. I recommend it to others or I don’t.
Sometime a book is good right up to a bad ending and I’m left shaking my head, rolling my eyes.
Other times I’m so engrossed in a book but wondering how is this ever going to pan out.
Well, the Lost Book of Adana Moreau did not disappoint. It was different from anything I’ve read recently in tone and
Sep 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: edelweissplus, 2019
Wow! Just... wow. The Lost Book of Adana Moreau is a complex, satisfying read, gradually building connections among narratives that initially feel disparate. The voice is engaging—a mix of whimsy, tangential thinking, and philosophy. While the entire novel takes place on our Earth, it explores the idea of multiverses, of the ways crucial events might have played out differently, and the ways individual characters might have been shaped differently. Reading this book requires thoughtful attention ...more
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. Just wow. I was given an ARC of this book, and I don’t think I understood just how incredibly lucky I was. This book is phenomenal. It is about so many themes and ideas, but by far it’s most compelling is the power of storytelling. Michael Zapata has written a novel obsessed with stories, and it is full of them. From science fiction stories to war stories, and from the stories that people tell about themselves to the stories that influence their lives. This will undoubtedly resonate with ...more
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An immersive book where interwoven narratives connect families, friends, and strangers across space and time.

Its themes of displacement, connection, stories, and family all swirl together beautifully as we are asked to consider the potential for what else might have been. Plus, this is a book that likes books, and you’ll get some new recommendations for your TBR.

Pair with: Famous Men Who Never Lived
Oct 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautifully written and crafted mystery, love story, homage to Latinx SFF and history, and a joy to read. Follow the stories of writers, pirates, parents, children, physicists, journalists, and the other rich and complex characters of this novel and learn about the glory of writing from the imagination, the past, and the hoped-for future. In the 1910s, Adana Moreau writes SFF with a decidedly personal twist, calling up her childhood in the Caribbean. In the aftermath of Hurricane ...more
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Could. Not. Put. It. Down. Hooked from the start. I am typically a slow reader taking my time through a book. This book however reeled me right from the start and I couldn’t let go. Had to get to the end, life around me be damned. At the risk of spoilers and giving away the story, I will just say that the characters are well developed and their journeys interesting. The writing was concise and I felt like I was right there in the depression, Chicago and Katrina, New Orleans. The ending pulled ...more
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a hard one to describe but well worth the read.
Kasa Cotugno
The description of The Lost Book of Adana Moreau piqued my interest despite being outside my usual choice for a novel. But I am so glad I gave it a chance. Totally immersive in style and content and spun out in gorgeous, almost poetic, prose, this is the tale of a manuscript lost for centuries, discovered and resulting in a present day road trip, with characters that breathe. Some of this writing is almost breathtaking ("Memory is a gravitational force. It is constantly attracting us to the past ...more
Dec 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Lost Book of Adana Moreau by Michael Zapata is a story in a story in a story of sorts. About two science fiction novels written in the late 1920’s or early 1930’s by a young Dominican woman displaced by American imperialism, married to a Black American pirate disenfranchised by American exclusionism, this book follows the popularity of one book, and the destruction and rebirth of the other up into the time surrounding hurricane Katrina. The book had a lot of overarching themes of political ...more
When it is snowy and cold outside, superspeed readers like me can read 150 - 200+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today. LOL

I received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review.

From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do .

The mesmerizing story of a Latin American science fiction writer and the
Dec 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’ll admit that when I received this book I was only mildly interested. However, since a publisher made the effort to bring it to my attention, I thought I should consider it worth my time to give it some attention. I am so glad I did! An extraordinary and unexpected debut was gifted to me. Layered with subtle complexity, I was quickly pulled in. I was torn between wanting to savor the imaginative story and lyrical writing or reading as quickly as possible to see where I would be taken. The ...more
Galen Strickland
Woke very early and couldn't get back to sleep, instead I finished this remarkable novel. Now I need to decide if I treat it like any other book review, or put it in the newly created Non-SF section of my blog.

This will appeal to SF fans, but the speculative elements are restricted to books written by characters in the book. The novel itself is literary fiction, of the highest order. An incredible debut, highly recommended.
Did not finish at 25% - just couldn’t get into this one.
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maxwell closed his eyes and thought of nothing and everything, all at once, just as Saul had taught him, as if he were walking through a dark labyrinth, the center of which was bathed in moonlight, or, like his missing father, sailing through an endless dark blue sea toward something unknown. Then he opened his eyes and began to read.

This is one of the most unusual books I've read in a while. The whole time I was reading it, I wasn't sure if I liked it or not. I wasn't fully sure what was
Jan 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC.

Zapata has written an ode to stories - storytelling and story-listening. The Lost Book of Adana Moreau is a beautiful novel. It covers some dark events and heavy themes but ultimately feels hopeful and uplifting. Zapata wraps the reader in the comfort of a much-loved childhood memory, while igniting the fires of possibility and potential for the future. It was the (unintentionally) perfect book to start the new year.

A plot summary really can
Rachel Stansel
This was very different from anything I have read. It is a story of people, unique and different, and the stories of their lives. I found it an interesting story with good characters. Some parts I liked and was drawn in by more than others, like Saul's story and Maxwell's, but overall it is good and well woven. The writing is vivid and beautifully intricate.

Full disclosure - I received a copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Dec 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is a whirlwind. The prose is beautiful, and the characters are richly explored. There are two main threads, but many side stories that are (for the most part) just as intriguing as the primary story. The ending fell a bit short for me after the lengthy build up, but it’s a book I enjoyed and will remember.
Jacquelyn Taylor
Jan 15, 2020 rated it did not like it
Did not finish. The premise of this book sounded exciting but the writing left much to be desired. The story was told, in no way did the reader begin to feel immersed in the story. I tried several times, but just could not get into the book and never did get past the first few pages..
Frank Tempone
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I’ve read in 2020 and probably the best one I will read this year. It is absolutely beautiful. I will read everything this man writes from now on.
Jan 13, 2020 marked it as could-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
DNF @48%. I wanted to love this but it wasn't for me. I might try to come back to it at some point.
rated it it was amazing
May 29, 2019
Matthew Sullivan
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Aug 07, 2019
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Sep 04, 2019
rated it really liked it
Jun 03, 2019
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Nov 04, 2019
rated it it was amazing
Dec 28, 2019
Amy Kerkstra
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Dec 18, 2019
Melanie Marinelli
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Sep 17, 2019
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Michael Zapata is the author of The Lost Book of Adana Moreau. He is a founding editor of the award-winning MAKE Literary Magazine. He is the recipient of an Illinois Arts Council Award for Fiction; the City of Chicago DCASE Individual Artist Program award; and a Pushcart Nomination. As an educator, he taught literature and writing in high schools servicing drop out students. He is a graduate of ...more