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The Altruists

About the Book

The Altruists

A vibrant and perceptive novel about a father's plot to win back his children's inheritance

Arthur Alter is in trouble. A middling professor at a Midwestern college, he can't afford his mortgage, he's exasperated his much-younger girlfriend, and his kids won't speak to him. And then there's the money --- the small fortune his late wife, Francine, kept secret, which she bequeathed directly to his children.

Those children are Ethan, an anxious recluse living off his mother's money on a choice plot of Brooklyn real estate, and Maggie, a would-be do-gooder trying to fashion herself a noble life of self-imposed poverty. On the verge of losing the family home, Arthur invites his children back to St. Louis under the guise of a reconciliation. But in doing so, he unwittingly unleashes a Pandora's box of age-old resentments and long-buried memories --- memories that orbit Francine, the matriarch whose life may hold the key to keeping them together.

Spanning New York, Paris, Boston, St. Louis and a small desert outpost in Zimbabwe, THE ALTRUISTS is a darkly funny (and ultimately tender) family saga that confronts the divide between baby boomers and their millennial offspring. It's a novel about money, privilege, politics, campus culture, dating, talk therapy, rural sanitation, infidelity, kink, the American beer industry, and what it means to be a "good person."

The Altruists
by Andrew Ridker

  • Publication Date: March 5, 2019
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Viking
  • ISBN-10: 0525522719
  • ISBN-13: 9780525522713