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- 193 x 135 x 23 mm
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48 Laws of Power
The Brand New Catastropheav Mike Scalise169
Winner of the Center for Fiction's Doheny Prize "His way is with humor, optimism, courage and probing introspection, the very characteristics -- combined with crisp prose and a rare and innately interesting medical condition -- that make this a winning literary debut." --The New York Times Book Review Raucous family memoir meets medical adventure in this heartfelt, hilarious book exploring the public and private theaters of illness. After a tumor bursts in Mike Scalise's brain, leaving him with a hole in the head and malfunctioning hormones, he must navigate a new, alien world of illness maintenance. His mother, who has a chronic heart condition and a flair for drama, becomes a complicated model as she competes with him for the status of "best sick person." The Brand New Catastrophe is a moving, funny exploration of how we define ourselves by the stories we choose to tell. Mike Scalise's work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Agni, Indiewire, The Paris Review Daily, and elsewhere. He has received fellowships and scholarships from Bread Loaf, Yaddo, the Ucross Foundation, and was the Philip Roth Writer in Residence at Bucknell University. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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One of Buzzfeed Books's "32 Most Exciting Books Coming in 2017" One of Publishers Weekly's Top Ten Memoirs & Biographies of Fall 2016 "Fascinating and engaging... Scalise's narrative verve and brisk prose create a winning chronicle of illness, recovery, and "courageous defiance." A frankly written debut memoir that captures all the fright of a medical calamity and the humor and grace necessary to survive it." --Kirkus Reviews "The Brand New Catastrophe reveals the human experience of acromegaly with a beautiful and skillful clarity, rendering the rare and misunderstood disorder with an intimate, personal grace." --Literary Hub "Despite his careful tracking of his own illness, Scalise's memoir is not the narrative of a catastrophe... Scalise's acromegaly is more recognizably a strain of Seneca's asthma or Susan Sontag's cancer. It is a point of departure for a work that is as much about idleness, the slow progression of treatment without climax, and the ways in which we form identities that embrace, as much as resist, what inflicts us.... Sublime." --The Iowa Review "[Scalise] artfully balances coruscating wit with gritty realism.... This is the most entertaining book about a brain tumor you'll read for a while.... A thoughtfully conceived and skillfully executed debut." --Electric Literature "In his memoir The Brand New Catastrophe, Mike Scalise meditates with crackling wit and self-awareness on chronic illness, family, and the cliches of catastrophe stories." --Kenyon Review "The effects of illness on self-image and its gravitational pull on family, friends, and spouse are touchingly detailed in this upbeat health memoir." --Booklist "A very funny book about the frailties of the flesh, the absurdities of modern medicine, and how to stay sane amid it all. Scalise's voice is fantastically entertaining, unfailingly honest." --Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King and Heroes of the Frontier "This remarkable, riveting memoir is often extremely funny--not something I expected to say about a book that chronicles the life-altering effects of the disease behind gigantism. Scalise himself, meanwhile, is an ideal narrator: self-lacerating and observant, without a petty or small-minded bone in his (thankfully, not yet gigantic) body. I loved this book." --Tom Bissell, author of Apostle: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve "A heartfelt and astonishingly funny memoir." --David Gutowski, Largehearted Boy "Like the dynamo spawn of Louis CK and Oliver Sacks, Mike Scalise's startling and slyly hilarious memoir is a heartfelt reminder of how astonishing, how terrifying, how absurd it is to be a body. An essential book for those who've lived through catastrophe, or only imagined it." --Alexandra Kleeman, author of You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine "The coming-of-age during an illness memoir is a genre we rarely see, and Scalise writes with maturity and hard-won wit about the ways in which a chronic illness can test the bonds of family. But even more surprisingly, he explores how life within an unruly body can be weirdly freeing, making The Brand New Catastrophe a hugely entertaining read." --Courtney Maum, author of I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You "Mike Scalise's The Brand New Catastrophe is a funny and clear-eyed view on illness, family, obligation and gigantism. It asks what we owe those we love and what we owe ourselves in moments of crisis. It's a jokey, melancholy, and deeply thoughtful love letter to the pains and pleasures of having a body that sometimes goes wrong. I loved it and you will, too." --Kaitlyn Greenidge, author of We Love You, Charlie Freeman "The Brand New Catastrophe strips away piety, jargon, and false feeling to show us what people, real people, really do and say when disaster hits. With the acuity of Ivan Ilyich and the giddily d
Mike Scalise s work has appeared in "Agni, Indiewire, Ninth Letter, The Paris Review, Wall Street Journal," and other places. He s an 826DC advisory board member, has received fellowships and scholarships from Bread Loaf, Yaddo, and the Ucross Foundation, and was the Philip Roth Writer in Residence at Bucknell University. His memoir, "The Brand New Catastrophe," was the recipient of The Center for Fiction's 2014 Christopher Doheny Award."