"I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day of January 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of l974. . . My birth certificate lists my name as Calliope Helen Stephanides. My most recent driver's license...records my first name simply as Cal."
So begins the breathtaking story of Calliope Stephanides and three generations of the Greek-American Stephanides family who travel from a tiny village overlooking Mount Olympus in Asia Minor to Prohibition-era Detroit, witnessing its glory days as the Motor City, and the race riots of l967, before they move out to the tree-lined streets of suburban Grosse Pointe, Michigan. To understand why Calliope is not like other girls, she has to uncover a guilty family secret and the astonishing genetic history that turns Callie into Cal, one of the most audacious and wondrous narrators in contemporary fiction. Lyrical and thrilling, Middlesex is an exhilarating reinvention of the American epic.
Middlesex is the winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
ALA Stonewall Book Award - Honor Book, Pulitzer Prize Winner, International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award - Nominee, National Book Critics Circle Awards - Nominee, Ambassador Book Award - Winner, National Books Critics Circle Awards - Nominee, Audible.com 100 Audible Essentials, Great Lakes Book Award - Winner, Lambda Literary Award - Nominee, (Selected for) Oprah's Book Club, Audie Award Winner, National Book Critics Circle Award - Nominee
MIDDLESEX (chapter 1)
THE SILVER SPOON
I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974....
Listen to an Excerpt from the AudiobookDownload MP3
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides--Audiobook Excerpt
Listen to this audiobook excerpt from Jeffrey Eugenides' novel Middlesex. In the spring of 1974, Calliope Stephanides, a student at a girls' school, Grosse Pointe, MI, finds herself drawn to a chain-smoking, strawberry-blonde classmate with a gift for acting. The passion that furtively develops between them--along with Callie's failure to develop--leads Callie to suspect that she is not like other girls.Share This
Praise for Middlesex
“Part Tristram Shandy, part Ishmael, part Holden Caulfield, Cal is a wonderfully engaging narrator. . . A deeply affecting portrait of one family's tumultuous engagement with the American twentieth century.” —The New York Times
“Expansive and radiantly generous. . . Deliriously American.” —The New York Times Book Review (cover review)
“A towering achievement. . . . [Eugenides] has emerged as the great American writer that many of us suspected him of being.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review (cover review)
“A big, cheeky, splendid novel. . . it goes places few narrators would dare to tread. . . lyrical and fine.” —The Boston Globe
“An epic. . . This feast of a novel is thrilling in the scope of its imagination and surprising in its tenderness.” —People
“Unprecedented, astounding. . . . The most reliably American story there is: A son of immigrants finally finds love after growing up feeling like a freak.” —San Francisco Chronicle Book Review
“Middlesex is about a hermaphrodite in the way that Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel is about a teenage boy. . . A novel of chance, family, sex, surgery, and America, it contains multitudes.” —Men's Journal
“Wildly imaginative. . . frequently hilarious and touching.” —USA Today
In the Press
One of the most anticipated new books around the FSG offices (and out in the real world, I daresay) is Jeffrey Eugenides' follow-up to Middlesex. - FSG's Work in Progress
Jeffrey Eugenides by John Freeman For the past fifteen years or so, whenever a novel has been published, John Freeman has been there to greet it. As a critic for over two hundred newspapers worldwide and onetime president of the NBCC, he's reviewed thousands of books and interviewed hundreds of authors. - FSG's Work in Progress
This wondrous epic from the author of "The Virgin Suicides" travels from Mt. Olympus to Detroit to tell the story of an all-American hermaphrodite. - Salon
At BookExpo America, the annual conference for booksellers, librarians and publishers, novelist Jeffrey Eugenides previewed The Marriage Plot, his much anticipated follow-up to Middlesex. (Astute Work in Progress readers may remember his conversation with editor Jonathan Galassi from our debut issue. - FSG's Work in Progress