Leaving the Atocha Station

Author(s): Ben Lerner


Adam Gordon is a brilliant, if highly unreliable, young American poet on a prestigious fellowship in Madrid, struggling to establish his sense of self and his attitude towards art. Fuelled by strong coffee and self-prescribed tranquillizers, Adam's 'research' soon becomes a meditation on the possibility of authenticity, as he finds himself increasingly troubled by the uncrossable distance between himself and the world around him. It's not just his imperfect grasp of Spanish, but the underlying suspicion that his relationships, his reactions, and his entire personality are just as fraudulent as his poetry.


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Veering between the comic and tragic, the self-contemptuous and the inspired, Leaving the Atocha Station is a dazzling introduction to one of the smartest, funniest and most audacious writers of a generation

Winner of The Believer Prize 2012. Runner-up for The Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature 2013 and PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize 2012. Shortlisted for James Tait Black Memorial Book Prize: Fiction 2013 and William Saroyan International Prize for Writing 2012 and LA Times Book Awards: Young Adult Fiction 2011.

Born in Kansas in 1979, BEN LERNER is the author of three books of poetry, The Lichtenberg Figures, Angle of Yaw, and Mean Free Path. He has been a finalist for the National Book Award, a Fulbright Scholar in Spain, and the recipient of a Howard Foundation Fellowship. In 2011 he became the first American to win the Munster State Prize for International Poetry. He teaches in the writing program at Brooklyn College. This is his first novel.

General Fields

  • : 9781847086914
  • : Granta Books
  • : Granta Books
  • : 0.146
  • : November 2012
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Ben Lerner
  • : 192