We are pleased to add Donald Breckenridge to the Black Sparrow list. Readers of Perec and French New Wave Cinema will revel in his haunting take on the traditional ghost story. Christopher Sorrentino, National Book Award finalist for The Fugitives, says “I was moved and often startled by And Then; a brown study of the hold the dead maintain over the living, of yearning, memory and regret. The writing is vivid, direct, clear; always surprising, always a pleasure to read.” Breckenridge takes readers on a hypnotically broken journey, chronicling his fathers slow and deliberate death, interweaving the stories of others: a young woman’s hopeful arrival in New York City, a young man’s voyeuristic summer spent housesitting for his professor, and a soldier who never made it out of Vietnam. What they all have in common is a deep preoccupation with the way lives resonate and connect, an emotionally honest love story about how we relate to others and ourselves. The work of a mature writer, And Then will be treasured by readers who look to literature to find solace and meaning in trying times.
“Lives converge and intertwine, with the evocativeness of waking dreams — or of that movie you saw so long ago that what remains is the sum of its most resonant images. I was moved and often startled by Donald Breckenridge’s AND THEN; a brown study of the hold the dead maintain over the living, of yearning, memory and regret. The writing is vivid, direct, clear; always surprising, always a pleasure to read.”– Christopher Sorrentino, author of Trance, and named a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award
The improvisatory ebb and flow of his sentences conveys a world of occurrences—clusters of detail and fragments of conversation that fade like images in a dream. There’s an elegiac stillness at the center of this powerful novel, a sense of starting over, of remembering and forgetting, that lingers like daybreak in the heart and mind.—Lewis Warsh, poet and co-founder of Angel Hair Magazine and co-editor of United Artists Magazine and Books