Reviews & Press
“Finding a new writer whose work I love reassures me that the end of storytelling is nowhere near…I can’t remember reading another novel—at least not recently—that’s both incredibly intelligent and emotionally engaging.”
“Tender but sharp-edged…Irina’s voice possesses a grim humor and quiet determination that is nothing short of charismatic.”
"Astonishingly beautiful and brainy... Strikingly original... Stunning."
"…Precise and unsentimental…Spinning an ambitious plot, unpredictable but never improbable, [duBois] moves with a magician’s control between points of view, continents, histories, and sympathies."
"...Gorgeous...DuBois writes with haunting richness and fierce intelligence. She has an equal grasp of politics and history, the emotional nuances of her complex characters, and the intricacies of chess...A Partial History of Lost Causes is a thrilling debut by a young writer who evidently shares the uncanny brilliance of her protagonists."
"[A] terrific debut."
"A Partial History of Lost Causes seems to assert that everything we strive for in life is likely to be, ultimately, a lost cause. But then why is the book so beautiful, so hopeful, so full of life? The beauty, hope, and vitality are all conveyed in the telling of this gorgeous story, rather than in the outcome. Such an important book coming from such a young writer should give us all hope in the glorious lost cause of American fiction."
"Whoever it was that coined the phrase ‘the political is personal’ would have enjoyed Jennifer duBois’ debut novel, A Partial History of Lost Causes. It is both personal and political, as well as hilarious and heartbreaking, winsome and wise…It is the story of last ditch efforts and Hail Mary passes; it is the story of how we struggle to survive and hold on to hope. It is a brilliant and beautiful piece of fiction."
"A Partial History of Lost Causes is probably the best fiction work I have read all year…DuBois has the ability to describe everyday thoughts and emotions in a way that left me breathless. I needed to reread sentences again and again because I was so taken with her prose…I look forward to read more of her work."
"This novel reads like a classic. DuBois has a natural storyteller's ability. Moving back and forth between the lives of Irina and Aleksandr, she weaves a tight novel rich with complex characters and story lines you watch merge with a satisfying sense of inevitability."