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The Gunners

A Novel

List Price: $26.00

ON SALE: March 20, 2018 | Hardcover | 6 x 9, 224 pages | ISBN 9781619029897
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“I recommend you read every single thing Rebecca Kauffman writes—start with this beautiful novel, and start now.” —Julie Buntin, author of Marlena

Following on her wonderfully received first novel, Another Place You’ve Never Been, called “mesmerizing,” “powerful,” and “gorgeous,” by critics all over the country, Rebecca Kauffman returns with Mikey Callahan, a thirty-year-old who is suffering from the clouded vision of macular degeneration. He struggles to establish human connections—even his emotional life is a blur.

As the novel begins, he is reconnecting with “The Gunners,” his group of childhood friends, after one of their members has committed suicide. Sally had distanced herself from all of them before ending her life, and she died harboring secrets about the group and its individuals. Mikey especially needs to confront dark secrets about his own past and his father. How much of this darkness accounts for the emotional stupor Mikey is suffering from as he reaches his maturity? And can The Gunners, prompted by Sally’s death, find their way to a new day? The core of this adventure, made by Mikey, Alice, Lynn, Jimmy, and Sam, becomes a search for the core of truth, friendship, and forgiveness.

A quietly startling, beautiful book, The Gunners engages us with vividly unforgettable characters, and advances Rebecca Kauffman’s place as one of the most important young writers of her generation.

About Rebecca Kauffman

REBECCA KAUFFMAN is originally from rural northeastern Ohio. She received her B.A. in Classical Violin Performance from the Manhattan School of Music, and several years later, she received her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from New York University. She currently lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. She is also the author of Another Place You’ve Never Been, which was a Center for Fiction long-list finalist.

Praise

Praise for The Gunners

“I recommend you read every single thing Rebecca Kauffman writes—start with this beautiful novel, and start now.” —Julie Buntin, author of Marlena

“Kauffman’s prose is restrained in a way that causes it to actually vibrate in places, and her details are so richly observed they feel like gems, impossible things mined from deep under the earth. Funny, raw, and deeply elegant, The Gunners is ultimately a meditation on friendship, that least examined, most mysterious form of love, perhaps more sacred for its incompleteness, for the ways we can never fool ourselves completely into believing we truly know one another.” —Rufi Thorpe, author of Dear Fang, with Love and The Girls from Corona del Mar

Praise for Another Place You’ve Never Been

Longlisted for the 2016 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize

“Fans of the vignette style of Richard Linklater’s “Boyhood” might enjoy Rebecca Kauffman’s take on the roman à clef. It’s an inventive debut that’s already been compared to Jennifer Egan’s A Visit from the Goon Squad and from an indie press, to boot!” —Huffington Post

“[A] wonderful debut… Watching how these characters intersect is incredibly satisfying. In clear and vivid prose, Kauffman potently depicts lonely and isolated lives, marked by rash decisions made in the hope of finding connection. By the end of the novel, the pieces of the puzzle that is Tracy’s life fit together, her disappointments as much a part of her as her small victories, resulting in an undeniably moving and emotionally true portrayal of the kitchen sink of human experience.” —Publishers Weekly (starred and boxed review)

“Kauffman’s compassion for her lonely characters is evident.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Kauffman’s immediately involving novel-in-stories, delivered in crisp language and with a strong sense of the characters surrounding her.” —Library Journal

“Kauffman’s prose is spare and vivid. She knows just the right details to bring a place or a person to life. It’s fun to anticipate the connections among characters from story to story, and to watch Tracy realize how the relationship with her father has colored her choices…Another Place You’ve Never Been is a moving, elegantly constructed tribute to human frailty and loss, and to our stubborn insistence on striving for human connection despite a slew of obstacles. In the character of Tracy, Kauffman has given us a fascinating portrait of a modern, tragic heroine, and a lens into our own darkest, most hopeful places.” —Fiction Advocate

“Through the eyes of the characters in these stories—many tragic but making the best of what they have—we glimpse Kauffman’s deep and abiding empathy.” —Read it Forward, Favorite Read for October

Another Place You’ve Never Been is a gorgeous, witty novel that reminded me of Olive Kitteridge… if Olive had been a down-on-her-luck waitress dreaming of love in upstate New York. I loved this kindhearted, beautiful book.” —Amanda Ward, author of The Same Sky

“In this mesmerizing novel, composed of short, powerful, interlocking stories, Rebecca Kauffman gives us a wide cast of characters struggling to find happiness, and maybe even transcendence, in a harsh landscape. At the center of it all is Tracy, a woman fighting against the odds, one of the most complex and memorable figures to appear in recent American fiction. Clear-eyed, witty, and dazzlingly inventive, this is a novel that disturbs and delights. An extraordinary debut.” —Brian Morton, author of Florence Gordon

“Kauffman’s writing is intentional…The way she uses her main character, Tracy, as a peripheral character in some chapters is brilliant. We all have aspects of Tracy in our own character, or at least know a Tracy: neglected, desperate, and perpetually human. I can’t say I’ve read anything quite so similar. This novel is gritty, exposed, American, inviting, and personal. Dive in, but be wary of the water.” —Staff Pick at Changing Hands Bookstore, Arizona

“Part of the fun of reading, I find, can be finding the title in the story. I won’t give it away, but I was surprised by the meaning when it showed up. Kauffman’s interlinked stories have some of the same characters, but different characters are featured in each story. Down on their luck, hard scrabble lives for the most part, some characters fortunes rise and fall, but they all carry on. Just when you think things will never change, the stories become stronger and the ending is well-done.” —Staff Pick at Brown Bookstore

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