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Ryan Boudinot's story collection The Littlest Hitler was an Amazon.com and Publishers Weekly "Book of the Year" choice, and established him as one of the most promising talents of a new generation of American writers. With Misconception, Boudinot has delivered a startlingly original debut novel--on one hand a smart and provocative coming-of-age story, on the other a fresh and witty comment on the unreliability of memory and storytelling--that is sure to command attention. Cedar Rivers is on a strange errand. A doctor sidelined into the strange world of the first dot-com boom, he has come to Albany, New York, in between business in Iceland and home in Silicon Valley, to meet a woman he hasn't seen in twenty years. Then a Chuck Taylor-shod proto-Goth with chipped black nail polish, Kat is now a literary up-and-comer who has summoned him to Albany to vet her memoir--an account of the summer they were sweethearts. As if that weren't enough, she's written parts of it from his point of view. Through an intense weekend in a snowed-in motel room, Cedar and Kat relive their most painful memories: Before they had a chance at first love, Kat's mother and her new fiance dragged Kat off on a family sailing trip. Kat returned with a secret, one which--when she shared it with Cedar--set off a series of drastically miscalculated assumptions that dominoed into a moment of startling tragedy. A tender, absurd, and heartbreaking novel about the unintended consequences of first love and bad judgment, Misconception slyly questions the way we narrate our memories and assign culpability. With a sharp eye for human foibles and a trenchant cleverness that dances off the page, Ryan Boudinot announces himself as a young writer who is here to stay.

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