In the vein of Coetzee's Summertime or W.G. Sebald's The Emigrants, TRINITY revisits the life of scientist Robert Oppenheimer as narrated by seven fictional characters who claim to have known him.
A fascinating, complex, and multi-faceted man, Oppenheimer was a devotee of liberal causes, as well as the father of the atom bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He loyally protected his Communist friends only to later betray them; he repeatedly lied about love affairs and struggled to explain his actions; he defended the use of the atomic bomb he helped create, then lobbied against nuclear proliferation.
Hall's brilliant and fresh new novel explores the overlap between science and literature, the connections between fiction and biography, and the different ways in which we know other people. Ultimately it begs the question: how can we ever really know another person?
Ingeniously structured . . . Hall excels at creating distinct characters whose voices illuminate their own lives and challenges, as well as the historical period that saw Oppenheimer's fall from grace. - Publishers Weekly
Much has been written about [J. Robert Oppenheimer] . . . but in this boldly imagined, multilayered novel, author Hall takes a new approach. Through her invented narrators, she explores themes of guilt and betrayal as well as the fallout from lies and self-delusion - in the process bringing Oppenheimer, an often aloof, conflicted man, to vivid life . . . Lushly written, this is an ambitious, unsettling novel that takes on big issues in a passionate, personal way. - Kirkus
Louisa Hall grew up in Philadelphia. After graduating from Harvard, she played squash professionally while finishing her premedical coursework and working in a research lab at the Albert Einstein Hospital. She holds a Ph.D. in literature from the University of Texas at Austin, where she currently teaches literature and creative writing, and supervises a poetry workshop at the Austin State Psychiatric Hospital. She is the author of the novel The Carriage House, and her poems have been published in the New Republic, Southwest Review, Ellipsis, and other journals.