American Fallout (None)

Brandon Wicks (Author)


For Avery Cullins--library archivist, former teenage runaway, and gay man from a small Southern town--"family" means a live-in boyfriend and a surly turtle. But when his father, a renowned nuclear physicist, commits suicide, Avery's decade-long estrangement from his mother, now hobbled following a stroke, comes to a skidding halt. With his boyfriend's help, Avery takes custody of his mother and the trio heads cross country in a rented U-Haul, back to an apartment in Cleveland and an uncertain future. Their journey soon becomes a pilgrimage into the past when Avery begins sifting through his mother's mementos. What emerges is a story of family, love, and loss as his parents made a home, lost a child, and tested the boundaries of marital love in the 1970s. Meanwhile, in today's uncertain social landscape, Avery must confront his own struggle with a mother who doesn't recognize him and a lover who seeks to claim him for his own.

Product Details

Santa Fe Writer's Project
Publish Date
May 01, 2016
5.6 X 0.8 X 8.5 inches | 0.9 pounds
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Brandon Wicks studied creative writing at George Mason University, where he received his M.F.A. He serves as an associate editor for SmokeLong Quarterly and teaches at the Community College of Philadelphia. This is his first novel.


"Compulsively readable. The writing is keenly observed and the characters feel as true and vivid as any I've found in a long time. Simply put: this is a really great book." --Matthew Norman, author, Domestic Violets
"A promising first novel about family, domesticity, and the ties that bind, whether we want them to or not." --Kirkus Reviews
"American Fallout is a powerful novel about family and change." --Foreword Reviews
"American Fallout is a powerful novel about family and change. Avery Cullins is a smart, sharp, and casual narrator with the self-awareness to understand the impact of the little changes that pile up over the course of his journey." --Stephanie Bucklin, Foreword Reviews