Category Archives: Fiction

Make Your Home Among Strangers

Make Your Home Among Strangers

Picador
Paperback
416 pages • $17.00
ISBN: 9781250094551
ebook icon

A Novel

Jennine Capó Crucet

“A smart, scathing, and hilarious depiction of a Cuban-American girl at a fancy northeastern university.”

Vanity Fair

When Lizet—the daughter of Cuban immigrants and the first in her family to graduate from high school—secretly applies and is accepted to an ultra-elite college, her parents are furious at her decision to leave Miami. Just weeks before she’s set to start school, her parents divorce and her father sells her childhood home, leaving Lizet, her mother, and Leidy—Lizet’s older sister, a brand-new single mom—without a steady income and scrambling for a place to live. Amidst this turmoil, Lizet begins her first semester at Rawlings College, distracted by both the exciting and difficult moments of freshman year. But the privileged world of the campus feels utterly foreign, as does her new awareness of herself as a minority. Struggling both socially and academically, she returns to Miami for a surprise Thanksgiving visit, only to be overshadowed by the arrival of Ariel Hernandez, a young boy whose mother died fleeing with him from Cuba on a raft. The ensuing immigration battle puts Miami in a glaring spotlight, captivating the nation and entangling Lizet’s entire family, especially her mother. Pulled between life at college and the needs of those she loves, Lizet is faced with difficult decisions that will change her life forever. Urgent and mordantly funny, Make Your Home Among Strangers tells the moving story of a young woman torn between generational, cultural, and political forces; it’s the new story of what it means to be American today.

(c) Monica McGivern

Jennine Capó Crucet is the author of Make Your Home Among Strangers and a story collection, How to Leave Hialeah, winner of the Iowa Short Fiction Award, John Gardner Book Prize, and Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award. She was raised in Miami and is currently assistant professor of English and Ethnic Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Make Your Home Among Strangers has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:

Albion College (MI) (two consecutive years!); California State University Channel Islands; Central College (IA); The College of New Jersey; Elon University (NC); College of the Holy Cross (MA); George Mason University (VA); Hollins University (VA); Holy Names University (CA); Kalamazoo College (MI); Knox College (IL); Maryville University (MO); Mount Saint Mary’s College (CA); New College of Florida; Northern Illinois University; Saint Mary’s College (CA); St. Cloud State University’s ACE Program (MN); University of Massachusetts, Amherst; University of Miami; University of Minnesota School of Education and Human Development; University of North Carolina, Asheville; Ventura College (CA); Whitman College (WA)

Her Body and Other Parties

Her Body and Other Parties

Graywolf Press
Paperback
248 pages • $16.00
ISBN: 9781555977887
ebook icon

Stories

Carmen Maria Machado

Winner of the Lambda Literary Award
Winner of the John Leonard Prize
National Book Award Finalist

“[Machado’s] use of a vivid experimental lens to show women struggling for agency is startling.”

The New Yorker

In Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado blithely demolishes the arbitrary borders between psychological realism and science fiction, comedy and horror, fantasy and fabulism. In this electric and provocative debut, Machado bends genre to shape startling narratives that map the realities of women’s lives and the violence visited upon their bodies. A wife refuses her husband’s entreaties to remove the green ribbon from around her neck. A woman recounts her sexual encounters as a plague slowly consumes humanity. A salesclerk in a mall makes a horrifying discovery within the seams of the store’s prom dresses. One woman’s surgery-induced weight loss results in an unwanted houseguest. And in the bravura novella “Especially Heinous,” Machado reimagines every episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, a show we naïvely assumed had shown it all, generating a phantasmagoric police procedural full of doppelgängers, ghosts, and girls-with-bells-for-eyes. Earthy and otherworldly, antic and sexy, queer and caustic, comic and deadly serious, Her Body and Other Parties swings from horrific violence to the most exquisite sentiment. In their explosive originality, these stories enlarge the possibilities of contemporary fiction.

Carmen Maria Machado

© Tom Storm Photography

Carmen Maria Machado‘s essays, fiction, and criticism have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Granta, Tin House, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, The Believer, Guernica, Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, and elsewhere. She holds an M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and currently is the Writer-in-Residence at the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Philadelphia with her wife.

The Sellout

The Sellout

Picador
Paperback
304 pages • $16.00
ISBN: 9781250083258
ebook icon

A Novel

Paul Beatty

Winner of the Man Booker Prize 

Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction

The Sellout is a comic masterpiece, but it’s much more
than just that—it’s one of the smartest and most honest reflections on race and identity in America in a very long time, written by an author who truly understands what it means to talk about the history of the country.”

—NPR

A biting satire about a young man’s isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court, Paul Beatty’s The Sellout showcases a comic genius at the top of his game. It challenges the sacred tenets of the United States Constitution, urban life, the civil rights movement, the father-son relationship, and the holy grail of racial equality—the black Chinese restaurant. Born in the “agrarian ghetto” of Dickens—on the southern outskirts of Los Angeles—the narrator of The Sellout resigns himself to the fate of lower-middle-class Californians. Raised by a single father, a controversial sociologist, he spent his childhood as the subject in racially charged psychological studies. He is led to believe that his father’s pioneering work will result in a memoir that will solve his family’s financial woes. But when his father is killed in a police shoot-out, he realizes there never was a memoir. Fueled by this deceit and the general disrepair of his hometown, the narrator sets out to right another wrong: Dickens has literally been removed from the map to save California from further embarrassment. Enlisting the help of the town’s most famous resident—the last surviving Little Rascal, Hominy Jenkins—he initiates the most outrageous action conceivable: reinstating slavery and segregating the local high school, which lands him in the Supreme Court.

Paul Beatty

© Hannah Assouline

Paul Beatty is the author of the novels TuffSlumberland, and The White Boy Shuffle, and the poetry collections Big Bank Take Little Bank and Joker, Joker, Deuce. He was the editor of Hokum: An Anthology of African-American Humor. He lives in New York City.

King Zeno

King Zeno

Picador
Paperback
400 pages • $19.00
ISBN: 9781250310347
ebook icon
audiobook icon

A Novel

Nathaniel Rich

King Zeno offers a gritty, panoramic portrait of the Big Easy, from its brothels and concert halls to the mansions of the Garden District . . . Full of sharply rendered characters, gallows humor and finely observed descriptions . . . A remarkable achievement.”

—John Michaud, The Washington Post

New Orleans, a century ago: a city determined to reshape its destiny and, with it, the nation’s. Downtown, a new American music is born. In Storyville, prostitution is outlawed and the police retake the streets with maximum violence. In the Ninth Ward, laborers break ground on a gigantic canal that will split the city, a work of staggering human ingenuity intended to restore New Orleans’s faded mercantile glory. The war is ending and a prosperous new age dawns. But everything is thrown into chaos by a series of murders committed by an ax-wielding maniac with a peculiar taste in music. The ax murders scramble the fates of three people from different corners of town. Detective William Bastrop is an army veteran haunted by an act of wartime cowardice, recklessly bent on redemption. Isadore Zeno is a jazz cornetist with a dangerous side hustle. Beatrice Vizzini is the widow of a crime boss who yearns to take the family business straight. Each nurtures private dreams of worldly glory and eternal life, their ambitions carrying them into dark territories of obsession, paranoia, and madness. In New Orleans, a city built on swamp, nothing stays buried long.

Nathaniel Rich

© Meredith Angelson

Nathaniel Rich is the author of two novels: Odds Against Tomorrow and The Mayor’s Tongue. He is a contributing writer at The New York Times Magazine and his essays have appeared in The New York Review of Books, The Atlantic, Harper’s Magazine, Rolling Stone, and The Daily Beast. He is also the author of a book about film noir, San Francisco Noir: The City in Film Noir from 1940 to the Present. He lives in New Orleans.

 

 

 

 

Continue reading

The City Always Wins

The City Always Wins

Picador
Paperback
320 pages • $18.00
ISBN: 9781250182050
ebook icon
audiobook icon

A Novel

Omar Robert Hamilton

Winner of the Betty Trask Prize
Winner of the Arab Literary Prize

“Powerfully transmits the hope and despair of Egypt’s Tahrir Square generation . . . One of the defining novels of the Arab Spring.”

The Wall Street Journal

The City Always Wins is a novel from the front line of a revolution. Deeply enmeshed in the 2011 uprising in Tahrir Square, Mariam and Khalil move through Cairo’s surging streets and roiling political underground, their lives burning with purpose, their city alive in open revolt, the world watching, listening, as they chart a course into an unknown future. They are—they believe—fighting a new kind of revolution; they are players in a new epic in the making. From the communal highs of night battles against the police to the solitary lows of post-revolutionary exile, Omar Robert Hamilton’s bold debut cuts to the psychological heart of one the key chapters in the twenty-first century. Arrestingly visual, intensely lyrical, uncompromisingly political, and brutal in its poetry, The City Always Wins is a novel not just about Egypt’s revolution, but about a global generation that tried to change the world.

Omar Robert Hamilton

© Sam Waxman

Omar Robert Hamilton is an award-winning filmmaker and writer. Based in Cairo and New York, he has written for The Guardian, the London Review of Books, and Guernica. He is co-founder of both Mosireen, a Cairo media collective formed in 2011, and the Palestine Festival of Literature.

 

 

 

 

 

Continue reading

Here I Am

Here I Am

Picador
Paperback
592 pages • $17.00
ISBN: 9781250135759
ebook icon
audiobook icon

A Novel

Jonathan Safran Foer

“Foer, who first won readers over with youthful exuberance, now proves he can write just as well about growing older. Here I Am is a stunner of a family saga.”

—Jenny Shank, The Dallas Morning News

In the book of Genesis, when God calls out, “Abraham!” before ordering him to sacrifice his son, Isaac, Abraham responds, “Here I am.” Later, when Isaac calls out, “My father!” before asking him why there is no animal to slaughter, Abraham responds, “Here I am.” How do we fulfill our conflicting duties as father, husband, and son; wife and mother; child and adult? Jew and American? How can we claim our own identities when our lives are linked so closely to others’? These are the questions at the heart of Jonathan Safran Foer’s Here I Am—his first novel in eleven years. Unfolding over four tumultuous weeks in present-day Washington, D.C., Here I Am is the story of a fracturing family in a moment of crisis. As Jacob and Julia Bloch and their three sons are forced to confront the distances between the lives they think they want and the lives they are living, a catastrophic earthquake sets in motion a quickly escalating conflict in the Middle East. At stake is the meaning of home—and the fundamental question of how much aliveness one can bear.

© Jeff Mermelstein

Jonathan Safran Foer is the author of two bestselling, award-winning novels, Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and a bestselling work of nonfiction, Eating Animals. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Continue reading

Annihilation

Annihilation

MCD x FSG Originals
Paperback
208 pages • $14.00
ISBN: 9780374537159
ebook icon

A Novel

Jeff VanderMeer

Now a Major Motion Picture
Winner of the Nebula Award

 

Annihilation is a book meant for gulping—for going in head-first and not coming up for air until you hit the back cover.”

—NPR

Area X has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilization. The first expedition returned with reports of a pristine, Edenic landscape; all the members of the second expedition committed suicide; the third expedition died in a hail of gunfire as its members turned on one another; the members of the eleventh expedition returned as shadows of their former selves, and within months of their return, all had died of aggressive cancer. This is the twelfth expedition. Their group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself. They arrive expecting the unexpected, and Area X delivers—they discover a massive topographic anomaly and life forms that surpass understanding—but it’s the surprises that came across the border with them, and the secrets the expedition members are keeping from one another, that change everything.

© Kyle Cassidy

Jeff VanderMeer is an award-winning novelist and editor, and the author most recently of the New York Times bestselling Southern Reach Trilogy. His fiction has been translated into twenty languages and has appeared in the Library of America’s American Fantastic Tales and multiple year’s-best anthologies. He grew up in the Fiji Islands and now lives in Tallahassee, Florida, with his wife