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The Epiphany Machine Hardcover – July 18, 2017
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“This is a wildly charming, morally serious bildungsroman with the rare potential to change the way readers think.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Hilarious. [A] razor-sharp alternate history...Gerrard's novel emphasizes just how desperately people want confirmation of their place in the world.”—The Washington Post
“An affecting exploration of fate and the clash of our private and public selves...ambitiously wrestling in the muck of big questions. A pleasurably speculative yarn about family and ethics.”— Kirkus Reviews
“With pitch-black humor worthy of Kafka, Gerrard’s second novel encourages us to pose this burning question: What are we hiding from ourselves.”—O, The Oprah Magazine
“This weirdly compelling tale feels like a creepy 'Twilight Zone' episode.”—Fort Worth Star-Telegram
“Whereas so much of what is called 'kafkaesque' doesn’t deserve that distinction, Gerrard earns it.”—LitHub.com
“Simply tremendous. An extraordinary book, full of wisdom and surprise, ingenious and original.”—Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
“With equal parts satire, mystery, and vaudevillian comedy, David Burr Gerrard has written a masterpiece.”—Alexander Weinstein, author of Children of the New World
“Gerrard joins his own wry humor with the joyful essence of Melville. The result is hysterical, delightful, and determined—and truly, an epiphany of a modern novel.”—Kristopher Jansma, author of The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards and Why We Came to the City
“Throw David Foster Wallace, Kurt Vonnegut, and David Mitchell in a blender and you will have something of a taste of the blood and guts of his work, and then drink deep!”—Scott Cheshire, author of High as the Horses’ Bridles
“Engrossing and inventive...A deeply compelling read by a terrific young writer.”—Ben Marcus,author of The Flame Alphabet
About the Author
David Burr Gerrard received an MFA in fiction writing from Columbia University. His first novel, Short Century, was published by Rare Bird Books, and his work has appeared in The Awl, The LA Review of Books, BOMB, Guernica, and other publications. He teaches fiction writing at Manhattanville College, the 92nd Street Y, and the Sackett Street Writers' Workshop.
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The chapter from one of the pilots of the 9/11 planes made me cry out loud, and I found myself frequently reading Gerrard's wry, wise one-liners to my partner. The author has a particular way with phrasing and dialogue - he effortlessly captures the anemic hipsters of New York City. A fascinating reflection on race, religion, identity, and sexuality, all wrapped around a very weird concept. Venter's tattoo read, CONSTANTLY SEEKS THE APPROVAL OF OTHERS - what would yours say?
This is an interesting look into ourselves. We all have that secret though that we don’t really want to admit but what happens when you have a truth tattooed on your skin in jest. How are you to live with that truth? What are you to do about it? How are you to change?
This book will having you thinking about yourself and if you were in the same position. But I have to say that the ending left things open for me. It was interesting the famous and regular people that get the tattoo.
This is a good story and I think that it will become popular although it has not really been advertised that much. It’s one to check out.
I received The Epiphany Machine from the publisher for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.