Let it never be said that we in the publishing industry don’t make the most of an opportunity. This month, as The Great Gatsby slides on out of copyright, No Exit Press are ready to go with Michael Farris Smith’s prequel NICK. No messing about, we’re off to the races.
Here, Farris Smith imagines the life of Nick Carraway before he ever met Jay Gatsby out there on the beach in West Egg. Fresh from the destruction and horror of the trenches of World War I, Nick delays his return home and instead wanders off on a transcontinental odyssey, taking in everything from a doomed Parisian romance to a debauched and violent spiral in New Orleans.
As Nick sets out to avoid questions he cannot answer about the war, the novel finds him on a journey of self-discovery, drunkenness and heartbreak. But the book is also a shimmering portrait of the golden age era, with all the romance and opulence that entails.
Read on for praise from Michael Farris Smith’s NICK:
‘Anybody who believes that the war is over when the enemy surrenders and the troops come home needs to read Michael Farris Smith’s masterful new novel NICK. Its stark, unvarnished truth will haunt you’ – Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Empire Falls
‘Stylish, evocative, haunting and wholly original, Michael Farris Smith has paid tribute to a classic and made it his own. A remarkable achievement that should sit at the very top of everyone’s must-read list’ – Chris Whitaker, CWA Dagger Award winning author of Tall Oaks
‘NICK is so pitch-perfect, so rich in character and action, so remarkable a combination of elegance and passion, so striking in felt originality that I am almost tempted to say – book gods forgive me – that The Great Gatsby will forever feel like NICK’s splendid but somewhat paler sequel. Almost tempted to say. But I have no intention of taking back the sincere passing thought of it. Michael Farris Smith’s book is that good’ – Robert Olen Butler, Pulitzer & F. Scott Fitzgerald Award-winning author
And you can listen to the author read an extract below:
NICK by Michael Farris Smith is published by No Exit Press on 25th February 2021
(9780857304544, h/b, £12.99)
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