Tuesday, August 6, 7pm
Left Bank Books
Left Bank Books presents an Evening with Christopher Boucher and Joseph Scapellato, in conversation with UMSL creative writing professor Shane Seely
Big Giant Floating Head is a wildly inventive, heartbreaking, and hilarious new novel about a man whose life is falling apart in very bizzare ways. After his wife announces on Twitter that she’s leaving him, Christopher’s life in small-town Coolidge just goes from one catastrophe to another. He contracts a strange illness that divides him in half, undergoes a failure competition, and is driven to join a cult called The Unloveables. How did it all get this bad? How can he regain his bearings, and find meaning and love once again?
Christopher Boucher is the author of the novels How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive (2011), Golden Delicious (2016), and Big Giant Floating Head (forthcoming in June 2019). He’s also the editor of Jonathan Lethem’s nonfiction collection More Alive and Less Lonely (2017) and the Managing Editor of the literary journal Post Road. Chris lives in western Massachusetts and teaches writing and literature at Boston College.
Existential noir meets absurd comedy when a young man reluctantly enlists as source material for an art project in The Made-Up Man. Stanley had known it was a mistake to accept his uncle Lech’s offer to apartment-sit in Prague—he’d known it was one of Lech’s proposals, a thinly veiled setup for some invasive, potentially dangerous performance art project. As the operation unfolds it becomes clear there’s more to this performance than he expected; they know more about Stanley’s state of mind than he knows himself. He may be able to step over chalk outlines in the hallway, may be able to turn away from the women acting as his mother and the men performing as his father, but when a man made up to look like Stanley begins to play out his most devastating memory, he won’t be able to stand outside this imitation of his life any longer.
Joseph Scapellato is the author of the story collection, Big Lonesome (2017), and the novel, The Made-Up Man (2019). He was born in the suburbs of Chicago and earned his MFA in Fiction at New Mexico State University. Joseph teaches in the creative writing program at Bucknell University and lives in Lewisburg, PA, with his wife, daughter, and dog.
Shane Seely is the author of three books of poems: The First Echo, The Surface of the Lit World, and The Snowbound House. He teaches poetry and creative nonfiction at University of Missouri-St. Louis, where he directs the MFA program.
Parking: Lot one block north; street parking (meters free after 7pm). For directions and public transportation information, click here.