The Gimmicks


Product Details

Publish Date
6.3 X 9.3 X 1.3 inches | 1.1 pounds
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About the Author

Chris McCormick is also the author of Desert Boys, a collection of stories, which won the Stonewall Book Award. Born in 1987 and raised on the California side of the Mojave Desert, he is a graduate of the University of Michigan's MFA program who lives and teaches in Minnesota.


“Chris McCormick is a novelist of uncommon vision, empathy, and purpose. The Gimmicks crosses continents and decades to tell a remarkable story of historical trauma, friendship, and the moral combat of professional wrestling. Though haunted by ghosts, The Gimmicks is brilliantly, boisterously alive."--Anthony Marra, author of NBCC John Leonard Prize-winning, New York Times bestselling A Constellation of Vital Phenomena
“Chris McCormick's The Gimmicks knocked me back and then knocked me over. A fascinating and bold debut novel that more than answers the promise of his terrific first collection of stories, Desert Boys. A wide-ranging, globe--Peter Orner, author of Maggie Brown & Others
"[The Gimmicks's] subcultures, emphasized in the book's eye-catching cover design and promotional copy, are not what fuel it. It's really about history -- personal and collective -- and it's rooted in horrors from more than a century ago that are still making news today... At a time when plot and contrivance in literary fiction are not the most fashionable things, McCormick, in his early 30s, proves adept at old-fashioned skills that one hopes will never go entirely unpracticed."--New York Times
"A fluid, beautifully written story about professional wrestling, intergenerational trauma, genocide, and history, jumping through Armenia to America and from one generation to another."--The Millions
"This brilliant, kooky book touches on everything from the Armenian genocide and the arcane rules of backgammon to the spandexed underworld of semiprofessional wrestling in 1980s Los Angeles...Hardly a page will go by that you won't marvel at McCormick's tender, surreally comic study of two brothers...It's all stranger than fiction, and too fantastic not to wish it were true."--Entertainment Weekly
"McCormick explores the plight of Armenian refugees who arrive in America with their bodies as their only commodity and how a national trauma shapes Armenian identity. Masterfully structured and stupendously ambitious, this sweeping historical epic bears comparison to Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay (2000). Always moving, brilliantly realized, and full of wondrous humor, this is a debut of rare depth and brilliance."--Booklist (starred review)