The Land of Laughs: A Novel (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Why don't more people know about Jonathan Carroll? If there's any one living author that I could magically uplift from obscurity, and place into the forefront of public consciousness, it would be Carroll. But alas, even with the praise of people like Pat Conroy and Neil Gaiman, he still hasn't seen the kind of success in his native United States that he deserves. And it's surprising, especially with the popularity of people like Gaiman and, not to mention, Haruki Murakami, both of whom he has plenty in common with, along with the complement of his own entirely unique vision. This may be his best book; it's the type of story that you can crawl into and get lost in. It's about a man in his dreary adulthood tracing the roots of his favorite children's book back to the town where the enigmatic author lived and work, where things quickly become very strange indeed. Carroll is a more than willing guide, clearly reveling in the art of storytelling, once having likened the moment that things take a stark turn from rational to fantastical to when a plane begins to pick up speed on a runway and lift up off from the ground. — From Salvatore's Picks


Have you ever loved a magical book above all others? Have you ever wished the magic were real? Welcome to The Land of Laughs. A novel about how terrifying that would be.

Schoolteacher Thomas Abbey, unsure son of a film star, doesn't know who he is or what he wants--in life, in love, or in his relationship with the strange and intense Saxony Gardner. What he knows is that in his whole life nothing has touched him so deeply as the novels of Marshall France, a reclusive author of fabulous children's tales who died at forty-four.

Now Thomas and Saxony have come to France's hometown, the dreamy Midwestern town of Galen, Missouri, to write France's biography. Warned in advance that France's family may oppose them, they're surprised to find France's daughter warmly welcoming instead. But slowly they begin to see that something fantastic and horrible is happening. The magic of Marshall France has extended far beyond the printed page...leaving them with a terrifying task to undertake.

About the Author

Jonathan Carroll's novel The Wooden Sea was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2001. He is the author of such acclaimed novels as White Apples, The Land of Laughs, The Marriage of Sticks, and Bones of the Moon. He lives in Vienna, Austria.

Praise For…

“Jonathan Carroll is a cult waiting to happen.” —Pat Conroy

The Land of Laughs is a book for anyone who has ever believed that a favorite book could be a safe place to go when things get hard.” —Neil Gaiman

“I envy anyone who has yet to enjoy the sexy, eerie, and addictive novels of Jonathan Carroll. They are delicious treats--with devilish tricks inside them.” —The Washington Post

Product Details
ISBN: 9780312873110
ISBN-10: 0312873115
Publisher: Orb Books
Publication Date: February 10th, 2001
Pages: 256
Language: English