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White Noise

White Noise


Book Overview: White Noise

White Noise tells the story of Jack Gladney, his fourth wife, Babette, and four ultra­modern offspring as they navigate the rocky passages of family life to the background babble of brand-name consumerism. When an industrial accident unleashes an "airborne toxic event," a lethal black chemical cloud floats over their lives. The menacing cloud is a more urgent and visible version of the "white noise" engulfing the Gladneys--radio transmissions, sirens, microwaves, ultrasonic appliances, and TV murmurings--pulsing with life, yet suggesting something ominous.

For more than sixty-five years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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PublisherPenguin Books
Publication Date2009-12-29
Edition25th Anniversary
Dimensionsin x in x in
Weight lbs

"One of the most ironic, intelligent, grimly funny voices to comment on life in present-day America . . . [ White Noise] poses inescapable questions with consummate skill."
--Jayne Anne Phillips, The New York Times Book Review

"DeLillo's eighth novel should win him wide recognition as one of the best American noveslists. . . . the homey comedy of White Noise invites us into a world we're glad to enter. Then the sinister buzz of implication makes the book unforgettably disturbing."

"A stunning book . . . it is a novel of hairline prophecy, showing a desolate and all-too-believable future in the evidence of an all-too-recognizable present. . . . Through tenderness, wit, and a powerful irony, DeLillo has made every aspect of White Noise a moving picture of a disquiet we seem to share more and more."
--Los Angeles Times

"White Noise captures the quality of daily existence in media-saturated, hyper-capitalistic postmodern America so precisely, you don't know whether to laugh or whimper."

"DeLillo is a prodigiously gifted writer. His cool but evocative prose is witty, biting, surprising, precise . . . White Noise [is] arguably [his] best novel."
--The Washington Post

"Its brilliance is dark and sheathed. And probing. In White Noise, Don DeLillo takes a Geiger-counter reading of the American family, and comes up with ominous clicks."
--Vanity Fair

"A stunning performance from one of our most intelligent novelists . . . Tremendously funny."
--The New Republic

"DeLillo's love and flair for language unite to tell us [...] something discomforting about mortality and something profound about the way we deal with it. It may be a novel superabounding with words, but none of them are wasted."
--The Guardian

Don DeLillo is an acclaimed American author, celebrated for his exploration of modern society's themes, including technology, consumerism, and global capitalism. Born in New York City on November 20, 1936, to Italian immigrants, DeLillo graduated from Fordham University in 1958. He began his literary career in the 1970s with the publication of his first novel, "Americana". He quickly established himself as a significant postmodern narrator, and his writings continued to resonate poignantly with various facets of American life. DeLillo’s most famous work, "White Noise" (1985), a satirical drama of modern American life, earned him a National Book Award. His other notable works include "Libra" (1988), a fictional analysis of the assassination of JFK, and "Underworld" (1997), an in-depth inspection of post-war American society. DeLillo consistently pushes literary boundaries, delivering narratives equipped with stunning prose, character depth, and prescient societal critique. Despite the arguable complexity and frequently experimental nature of his work, DeLillo has gained significant recognition. He was awarded the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for his novel "Mao II" and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for "Underworld". Today, DeLillo’s influence upon American literature is undeniable, and his work continues to inspire readers and writers alike to confront our complex and ever-evolving world.


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