Richly told, details our culture of fear

“‘Orfeo,’ richly told, details our culture of fear,” by John Domini,, January 19, 2014.

Orfeo displays all the excellences for which Richard Powers is celebrated. … But beyond the conceptual fit is the beauty of its expression. Orfeo, titled after a Monteverdi opera and, of course, a mythic maestro, has passages that rise to ecstasy. Its descriptions mushroom, transforming grit to psalms. …

… In this medium, the novel, Don DeLillo used to be the American we relied on for cold-eyed brilliance about our “altered world.” Now, Richard Powers has taken over the job, alert to every fresh crack in the former reality. Yet as he details these, in his two latest narratives, he embraces a new playfulness and teases out unexpected glimmers of possibility.

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