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BOOK REVIEW

A captivating and provocative coming-of-age tale

By Karen Campbell
October 27, 2011

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A fractured journey into the past sets in motion Paul La Farge’s “Luminous Airplanes,’’ a wry and provocative coming-of-age tale. It is September 2000, and the narrator has been living aimlessly in a “city of ghosts’’ following the technology industry downswing. He still hasn’t finished his college dissertation on the Millerites, a 1800s sect that predicted the end of the world, and likens the group’s ascension robes to “luminous airplanes.’’ Existential musing is the order of the day

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LUMINOUS AIRPLANES

By Paul La Farge

Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 245 pp., $25