Richard Powers' “Bewilderment” Is Oprah’s New Book Club Pick

·2 min read
Photo credit: Huy Doan
Photo credit: Huy Doan


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Oprah today announced that her latest selection for Oprah’s Book Club is Bewilderment, a novel by Richard Powers. Oprah says of the book and its author: "Richard Powers is one of our country’s greatest living writers. He composes some of the most beautiful sentences I’ve ever read. I’m in awe of his talent.”

The highly anticipated book follows Powers’ 2018 masterpiece, The Overstory, which was named the Pulitzer Prize-winner for fiction in 2019. Powers had this to say about his latest novel being designated an OBC pick: “I’m honored and moved to be named an Oprah Book Club choice. ‘Bewildered’ doesn’t begin to describe it. This is among the most rewarding recognitions I’ve received over my 40 year career.”

Bewilderment, which was released on September 21 by W.W. Norton & Company, chronicles the tenderly beautiful relationship between Theo, an astrobiologist, and his 9-year-old son, Robin, following the tragic loss of Alyssa, Theo’s wife and Robin’s mother. Theo searches for life elsewhere in the cosmos and passes on his passion for planets real and imagined to his son, who struggles to fit in or to make sense of what’s happening in his own life and in the larger world.

But the book is even bigger than that—it stands as an ode to our imperiled planet, an elegy to Earth and its inhabitants beset by climate change. “Oh, this planet was a good one," Powers writes in Bewilderment. “And we too, were good, as good as the burn of the sun and the rain’s sting and the smell of living soil, the all-over song of endless solutions signing the air of a changing world that by every calculation ought never to have been.”

Oprah’s interview with Richard Powers will air October 22 on Apple TV+. To join Oprah’s Book Club in conversation about the book, use #ReadWithUS and follow @OprahsBookClub on Instagram and Facebook.

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