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Publisher's Summary

Oprah Book Club Pick 2021

Shortlisted for the 2021 Booker Prize

A heartrending new novel from the Pulitzer Prize-winning and number one New York Times and internationally best-selling author of The Overstory. 

Named one of the Most Anticipated Books of 2021 by New York, Chicago Tribune, BookPage, Literary Hub, The Millions, New Statesmen and Times of London

The astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life throughout the cosmos while singlehandedly raising his unusual nine-year-old son, Robin, following the death of his wife. Robin is funny, loving, and filled with plans. He thinks and feels deeply, and can spend hours painting elaborate pictures of the endangered animals he loves. He is also about to be expelled from third grade for smashing his friend in the face.

What can a father do, when the only solution offered to his troubled son is to put him on psychoactive drugs? What can he say when his boy comes to him wanting an explanation for a world that is clearly in love with its own destruction? 

With its soaring descriptions of the natural world, its tantalizing visions of life beyond and its account of a father and son's ferocious love, Bewilderment marks Richard Powers's most intimate and moving novel. At its heart lies the question: How can we tell our children the truth about this beautiful, imperilled planet?

©2021 Richard Powers (P)2021 Random House Canada

Critic Reviews

An International Best seller

Shortlisted for the 2021 Booker Prize

Longlisted for the 2021 National Book Awards for Fiction

An Oprah's Book Club Pick

A Heather's Pick

One of Indigo'S Best Books of the Year 2021

“In Bewilderment [Powers’] mastery strikes a new vein...glittering with timeless story elements; it raises goosebumps and breaks our hearts.... The author’s shortest work and his most far-seeing.... Richard Powers has brought off something more than [the second of] two exemplary and superb fictions of the climate crisis. He’s also unearthed and refurbished the timeless link between artist and shaman, a voice crying in the wilderness.” (The Brooklyn Rail)

“Soaring descriptions and forthright observations about our planet and the life it supports.... [Bewilderment] offers rich commentary on the complex, often mystifying intersections between science, popular culture, and politics.... As the best-selling The Overstory continues to reverberate, readers will be excited to turn to another deeply involving Powers novel.” (Booklist, starred review) 

What listeners say about Bewilderment

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Excellent

Terrific book that really catches you off guard. Ballerini's performance is excellent as always. There is much to reward the close listener with this one.