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The Vixen: A Novel by Francine Prose Paperback 2021 Fiction Book 1950s New York


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The Vixen: A Novel by Francine Prose (Paperback, 2021).

Excellent, like new condition. New (never read) with minor wear and marks as shown.

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336 Pages




Published: 4th August 2022

ISBN: 9780063012158

Named one of the best books of 2021 by NPR, The Washington Post, and Financial Times

Critically acclaimed, bestselling author Francine Prose returns with a dazzling new novel set in the glamorous world of 1950s New York publishing, the story of a young man tasked with editing a steamy bodice-ripper based on the recent trial and execution of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg an assignment that will reveal the true cost of entering that seductive, dangerous new world.

It’s 1953, and Simon Putnam, a recent Harvard graduate newly hired by a distinguished New York publishing firm, has entered a glittering world of three-martini lunches, exclusive literary parties, and old-money aristocrats in exquisitely tailored suits, a far cry from his loving, middle-class Jewish family in Coney Island.

But Simon’s first assignment editing The Vixen, the Patriot and the Fanatic, a lurid bodice-ripper improbably based on the recent trial and execution of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, a potboiler intended to shore up the firm’s failing finances makes him question the cost of admission. Because Simon has a secret that, at the height of the Red Scare and the McCarthy hearings, he cannot reveal: his beloved mother was a childhood friend of Ethel Rosenberg’s. His parents mourn Ethel’s death.

Simon’s dilemma grows thornier when he meets The Vixen’s author, the startlingly beautiful, reckless, seductive Anya Partridge, ensconced in her opium-scented boudoir in a luxury Hudson River mental asylum. As mysteries deepen, as the confluence of sex, money, politics and power spirals out of Simon’s control, he must face what he’s lost by exchanging the loving safety of his middle-class Jewish parents’ Coney Island apartment for the witty, whiskey-soaked orbit of his charismatic boss, the legendary Warren Landry. Gradually Simon realizes that the people around him are not what they seem, that everyone is keeping secrets, that ordinary events may conceal a diabolical plot and that these crises may steer him toward a brighter future.

At once domestic and political, contemporary and historic, funny and heartbreaking, enlivened by surprising plot turns and passages from Anya’s hilariously bad novel, The Vixen illuminates a period of history with eerily striking similarities to the current moment. Meanwhile it asks timeless questions: How do we balance ambition and conscience What do social mobility and cultural assimilation require us to sacrifice How do we develop an authentic self, discover a vocation, and learn to live with the mysteries of love, family, art, life and loss

About the Author

Francine Prose is the author of twenty-one works of fiction including, most recently, the highly acclaimed novel, MISTER MONKEY, and the New York Times bestselling novel, LOVERS AT THE CHAMELEON CLUB, PARIS 1932. Her novel A CHANGED MAN won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and BLUE ANGEL was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her works of nonfiction include the highly praised ANNE FRANK: THE BOOK, THE LIFE, THE AFTERLIFE, and theNew York Times bestseller READING LIKE A WRITER, which has become a classic.

The recipient of numerous grants and honors, including a Guggenheim and a Fulbright, a Director’s Fellow at the Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library, Francine Prose is a former president of PEN American Center, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She lives in New York City.

Industry Reviews

“No one states problems more correctly, more astutely, more amusingly and more uncomfortably than Francine Prose . . . The gift of her work to a reader is to create for us what she creates for her protagonist: the subtle unfolding, the moment-by-moment process of discovery as we read and change, from not knowing and even not wanting to know or care, to seeing what we had not seen and finding our way to the light of the ending.” – Amy Bloom, New York Times Book Review

“Depending on the light, it’s either a very funny serious story or a very serious funny story. But no matter how you turn it, The Vixen offers an illuminating reflection on the slippery nature of truth in America, then and now.” – Washington Post

Additional information

Weight 1000 g
Dimensions 20 × 10 × 3 cm
Original Language


Narrative Type




Country/Region of Manufacture

United States

Intended Audience

Adults, Young Adults



Ex Libris










Book Title

The Vixen: a Novel

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Item Width









Harpercollins Publishers Inc

Publication Year




Item Weight


Number of Pages

336 Pages


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