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Awake In The Mad World [Kindle Edition]

Damon Ferrell Marbut
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.99
Kindle Price: $4.99
You Save: $8.00 (62%)

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God Help the Child
A fierce and provocative novel that adds a new dimension to the matchless oeuvre of Toni Morrison.

Book Description

Pete Rattigan is a frustrated young newspaper journalist caught up in uncertainty of the post-graduate “real world”. One night, one seemingly minor encounter sparks a philosophical journey which leads him to discover that in the most beautiful or even cruel moments of life, the power of friendship explains the power of the universe. And that perhaps there is no such thing as chance. With force, humor and sensitivity Damon Ferrell Marbut presents his debut, Awake in the Mad World, which frees its audience to believe again in the wildness of the young American heart, how it beats just to prove that it will always survive and succeed on its own terms.

Editorial Reviews


We've probably all found ourselves, at some point, wondering what the 'real world' is and whether we've reached it yet. For newspaper journalist Pete Rattigan, the question is becoming increasingly important as he struggles to get through life now that he's graduated. Then a chance encounter changes everything, and Pete finds himself drawn into a life-changing experience.
I've left the plot outline purposefully vague because I feel this is the kind of book that's best read 'cold', i.e. if you know as little as possible about what's coming up. Damon Ferrell Marbut has created some remarkable characters here, and he manages to hold together a powerful narrative that - in lesser hands - would have fallen flat. I kept waiting for the narrative to slip a little, but it didn't. This was a genuinely moving book, from first page to last.
Maybe I'm a sucker for this type of novel, since it explores a world that I've passed through quite recently. But the themes are for the most part universal, and Marbut's writing is strong enough to draw in any reader. This really is quite a brilliant novel, and one that I'd recommend to anyone who has ever wondered how their own hopes and dreams fit into the 'real world'.
Indie Bookspot

About the Author

Damon Ferrell Marbut is a novelist and poet living in New Orleans. Connect with him online at

Product Details

  • File Size: 674 KB
  • Print Length: 350 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Damon F Marbut (July 1, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008HS7MS0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #766,999 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Coming of Age at Its Best June 26, 2012
With Awake in the Mad World, Marbut has written a coming of age novel that showcases so many of the issues of twenty and thirty-somethings in America today. He shows the disillusionment with established norms that so many encounter. His novel portrays this, "I went to college, what now?", mindset that has become more prevalent. His characters bring this issue to life and grapple with decisions of entering the workforce in a job that is meaningless or going to graduate school until they figure out what to do with their lives. Marbut's novel is a beautiful, thoughtful read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read August 8, 2012
I just finished reading this book and will be re-reading it. The book is rich with the complexities of the human experience. It provoked a roller-coaster of thoughts and emotions as I followed and found myself in every character at various times. This is a good thing for me as I was re-affirmed in my belief in the inescapable interconnection I have with all humankind. I look forward to my next ride on this roller-coaster because I know I will have a different experience based on my mental, psychological, and emotional states. Thank you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible piece of work from a fresh new voice October 15, 2012
It's not often that a book touches me as much as "Awake in the Mad World" has. Through a richly detailed family of characters that you can both easily identify with and care deeply about, Mr. Marbut has poignantly and perfectly captured the essence of what I and many of my friends have experienced--that feeling of looking at life and thinking "now what"? From the moment I was introduced to Rattigan I became part of his journey, immediately relating to the artist and the man, reveling in the moments of joy and humor, and feeling the gripping tugs of pain from the bite of disappointment and tragedy. This is not a book, it is an experience, one which I urge everyone to be a part of. I definitely look forward to reading more from Mr. Marbut.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommend! August 18, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Such a great book and set in my home town, which I just get a kick out of. I love the character progression and the interaction between them. I would highly recommend this novel as it is fresh and unique.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By Kevin O
What a treat! This novel came my way at a perfect time in my life. We all have those moments in life where you stop and say what am I doing with my life, where am I going, what is next? The story told in "Awake in the Mad World", which focuses on friendships, love, and careers spoke directly to me. The way the characters interacted and formed intense friendships made me realize how much truth and honesty there is to my own story. I felt like a silent character in the story, sitting and watching, and wanting to join the tightly formed friendship that Damon Marbut portrayed. The journey that the characters took, whether be it a triumph or tragedy, kept me wanting to read more. There is something to say about the truth that Marbut wrote, being that, like his character of Pete Rattigan, the power of friendship and love is the fuel needed to inspire and grow in this mad world. I found this novel to really inspire me to form tighter bonds with my own friends, and push myself to the next level. I look forward to next novel that Marbut writes, and will continue passing this current novel on to the next person needing inspiration.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, pleasantly surprised! July 22, 2012
By Andre
A friend referred me to this book saying it was well worth the read. At first I was skeptical but turned out he was more than right. I was quickly immersed in to the characters story. It was nice to be able to really relate to a book. It seems like so long since I have read a good story like this, one that takes me back as if the memories were my own.I highly recommend this book, A great coming of age story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Place and where we find ourselves in it December 18, 2012
There is something about the skill with which Damon Ferrell Marbut paints his debut novel that for some reason conjures the images of isolation of American painter Edward Hopper - that eerie spirit of isolation in that midst of a world at once too much with us and yet quietly not within our reach. Not that Marbut's exquisite novel AWAKE IN THE MAD WORLD is a period piece from the time of Hopper (mid 20th century) - quite the opposite: this is a book about now, yet not even about Now because the where of it is so elusive.

There are some who quite understandably would classify this as a coming of age novel but for the fact that these emotionally retarded characters are post grad students, not so much struggling with the slings and arrows of oncoming puberty as in Salinger's novels, but instead mid-twenties overeducated and psychically underprepared people that we are currently cranking out of our educational system - prepared from books and seminars and other forms of informational transfusion to be able to tackle the world of commerce and success, but lacking in the essential qualities of maturity that allow the formation of relationships of a meaningful nature.

To this reader, this story, engrossing and interesting as it is as a stand alone reading experience, calls forth a certain quasi-painful response about what we have done with our world, that world we are passing on to a generation ill equipped to decipher all the conflicting messages screamed at them.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Too many commas....rambling style
First and foremost - I'm not a book snob. This book is pure torture to read due to the astounding number of commas. As in a sentence might have 8 commas. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Engineeringish
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
"Awake in the Mad World" by Damon Ferrell Marbut was recommended to me by a friend.
It is a strong novel that portrays a group of young people and their reflections on... Read more
Published 17 months ago by ChristophFischerBooks
5.0 out of 5 stars Hats off to Mr.Marbut
“Once patience no longer feels like a labor, then you’re set to really do some great things.” Awake in the Mad World is beautifully written with passion and verve. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Peter Jelen
5.0 out of 5 stars Just amazing!
Love, love, love this book. The author did a wonder job. I would recommend this book to all my friends. Def worth buying!
Published 19 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars a joy to read for the literate reader
There are readers who will never understand all that they read, usually only if the story pertains to them...if not, they often have negative comments. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Larry L Graham
5.0 out of 5 stars The romance I look for in the English literature
I can't finish reading a book if I don't like; I read this one from cover to cover. I like the way the desciption flows from characters to the setting and back. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Khouloud Khammassi
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Amazing
The author in this book portrays his story with true feeling and emotion. I would recommend this book to everyone. A great read!
Published 19 months ago by Monique Michaels
3.0 out of 5 stars Awake then Asleep
When I converse with family, friends, neighbors and accquaintainces, we speak in concise sentences and not long paragraphs. Read more
Published 23 months ago by Ben Campbell
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!!!!
Damon Ferrell Marbut creates a world that pulls you in and that will not let you go! I was enthralled by this story. Read more
Published 24 months ago by Ojani
4.0 out of 5 stars Somehow compelling
I like the characters and the story in this book. It's not quite world class yet but it really is on the way for its originality and I certainly wanted to see how it all panned... Read more
Published on March 3, 2013 by W. Rawady
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More About the Author

Damon Ferrell Marbut was born in Mobile, Alabama. A Southern novelist and poet, he lives in New Orleans, Louisiana. Marbut's Awake in the Mad World is a contemporary fiction novel described by many as modern Beat fiction. His collection of poems, Little Human Accidents: Chaos Poems from the Brink, published late summer 2013 through Bareback Press in Canada. His latest collection, Human Crutches, released in July 2014 and provides insider perspective on French Quarter bar life.

Special thanks to friend and acclaimed New Orleans photographer Larry Graham (

Contact the author through his Facebook Author Page at, or follow him on Twitter @dfmnola.

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