The Dissident: A Novel

The Dissident: A Novel

Nell Freudenberger

Language: English

Pages: 448

ISBN: 0060758716

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

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“Put that away, and let’s go,” Mrs. Diller said. June held her chessboard tighter. “It’s mine,” she said. “I brought it from home.” The vice principal looked to me for confirmation: we were still colleagues at that point, and she expected support. “It’s hers,” I said. “Willie will walk you down to the parking lot,” she told June. June was still waiting for my answer. I hadn’t allowed myself to think that I might not see her again. I had to say something—but what could I say in front of the

self-satisfied expression that he associated, probably unfairly, with the Pacific Northwest. You could imagine her going on hiking trips on the weekends, with a bunch of equally smug, middle-aged “girlfriends.” “I certainly hope so,” Karen said skeptically. “She’s happy,” Phil said. “That’s why she’s, um, making sounds.” Fionnula did sometimes chitter when she was pleased, if you rubbed behind her ears or gave her a melon rind. Those sounds probably meant something different now. He had brought

science report card always said that if it were not a question of so many missed or late assignments, Max could be getting As. Cece didn’t think that grades were very important—that was one of the values she and Gordon shared—but the problem was that another one of their values was the importance of college, and you could not be a white kid from a private school in Los Angeles with no extracurriculars and a C average and expect to get in anywhere decent. Apart from his grades, however, Max had

do you need to do?” “Well, we wanted to leave some art supplies in the pool house. Some watercolors, and one of those wooden manikins, you know, for figure drawing. It was supposed to be for Max, but all he draws are cartoons. And we put in a skylight,” Cece continued. “The guys finished yesterday, but they’ve left a mess of course.” “A skylight!” “For painting, since it’s going to be his studio for a whole year.” “Well that’s generous,” Joan said. Her sister-in-law implied that it was too

America was worth the risk of shipping them. Truthfully, X had been more convinced of this than I was; as someone whose greatest artistic influence was a man obsessed with the damage that air and light inflict on ink and paper, I have never been sure that attention is good for paintings. The paintings I began to make that year in California, ink sketches of lobsters and bamboo, rocks, clouds, trees, and finally mountains, were not what the faculty was expecting. Mrs. Travers and Principal McCoy

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