At once an offbeat love story, a moving portrait of a family in crisis, and a darkly funny American comedy, Kyle Beachy’s arresting debut novel—written in prose that is swift, stunning, and sweet—heralds the arrival of a remarkable new voice in fiction.
Potter Mays retreats immediately after college graduation to the safe house of his childhood home. Like clockwork each morning, his mother makes him eggs, lovingly fried into hollowed-out pieces of toast. His father, in the midst of a campaign to revitalize downtown St. Louis, promises to “poke around” for gainful employment for his son. Potter’s best friend, Stuart—an “Independent Thought Contractor” working out of his parents’ lavish pool house—is willing to serve as a kind of life coach, provided, of course, that Potter pays for his services all summer.
Altogether elsewhere, Potter’s (former? future?) girlfriend, Audrey, is backpacking around Europe with her beautiful bisexual traveling companion, Carmel. Potter was not invited, and getting a good night’s sleep has recently become an issue for him.
As enigmatic packages arrive from Audrey, the refuge of life at home soon proves illusory. Potter’s parents are oddly never in the same room together, the neighbor girl is looking quite adult, and Stuart’s much-needed counseling service is subcontracted to a third-party denizen of the pool house with an agenda all his own. And just what are those noises coming from the attic?
Kyle Beachy has woven a uniquely affecting story of the long and hard, then quick and hard, struggle to grow up.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
- Random House Publishing Group, January 2009
The Dial Press
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