"Following the death of a renowned and eccentric collector—author of Stuff, a seminal philosophical work on the art of accumulation—the fate of the privately endowed museum he cherished falls to a peripatetic stranger who had been his fervent admirer. This peculiar institution (The Society for the Preservation of the Legacy of Dr. Charles Alexander Morgan) is dedicated to the annihilation of hierarchy. A priceless Dürer and other peerless antiquities commune happily with a toothbrush, a plastic coffee cup lid, and the rest of the ignored, the discarded, the undervalued, and the valueless. The caretaker, a restless devotee of Dr. Morgan’s work, believes he has landed the job of his dreams. But as the years go by and the lines of identity begin to blur, the caretaker learns he must pay a terrible price to inhabit Morgan’s home, his history, and the remnants of his life.”
"The Caretaker may conjure up various genres—parables, ghost stories, locked-room mysteries—but Doon Arbus draws her phosphorescent water from no other writer’s well. The Caretaker is a profound, probing novel with the momentum and tension of a thriller and is, in the words of Publishers Weekly, an “unnerving feat of contemporary postmodernism.” – read more
About the Author: Doon Arbus makes her debut as a novelist with The Caretaker. She is also a freelance journalist: in her reportage work, she frequently wrestles with the hidden codes in a subject’s spoken language, its hesitations and reversals, allowing what the speaker seeks to obscure to become the revelation. Two of her six nonfiction books, co-authored with longtime collaborator Richard Avedon, integrate her text and his photographs to craft a collision of words and images into single labyrinthine narratives.
The fact that Arbus has been responsible for the care and dissemination of the Estate of Diane Arbus, her mother’s photographic work for the past fifty years, could suggest that a book entitled The Caretaker might relate to the author’s personal experience, but the protagonist of this novel is a most singular man and his story is his own.
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