Mathematician Emily Kogan needs to finish her thesis, and her secretive family may be just the inspiration she's looking for. When she returns to her family's vacation lodge she decides to conduct research into the influence of personal relationships, using her family tree as an original social network. Tracing the spiderwebs of these connections, she learns far more than she bargained for.
In the 1930s, Harpo Marx joins his brothers at the Kogan's Jewish resort in Canada. Unhappy after the death of his parents and uncertain in life after the latest Marx Borthers' movie flopped at the cinemas, Harpo is looking for something or someone to save. Captivated by the mysterious Ayala Kogan and her two daughters, he is drawn deeply into the lives of the Kogan family and their tragic past.
Effortlessly weaving together these two storylines, Alexis von Konigslow draws the reader into an astonishing tale of ill-fated love, extraordinary courage and a daring transatlantic escape.
About the author
Alexis von Konigslow has a degree in Mathematics and Physics, and an M.F.A. in creative writing. She lives in Toronto with her husband and son.
“At this novel’s heart is a mystery, one that can sustain propelling the story forward and back. It’s Arcadia for the connected age.”
Globe and Mail
“Konigslow is a gifted writer who has assembled a cast of complex, sharply observed characters. Her soulful, introspective Harpo is a refreshing contrast to the manic clown with his bicycle horn he played on-screen, and his scenes with his brothers Groucho and Chico, who are also vacationing at the resort, crackle with Borscht Belt charm.”
Events: Poetry and Prose
“This is a story about family secrets, the complexities of love, and the way our lives interconnect with each other, sometimes in unexpected ways.
Consumed by Ink
“A weird, enthralling, and singularly original book.”
Pickle Me This
“Von Konigslow wins us over with both the sheer elegance of her prose and the scope of this novel’s vision. Harpo Marx is fully imagined here, and his experiences help to provide a buttress of plausibility; Emily, meanwhile, proves a worthy lead character for her thread, a woman with a sensitive eye and an open ear.”
Free Range Reading