The Gimmicks

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$27.99  $26.03
Publish Date
6.3 X 9.3 X 1.3 inches | 1.1 pounds

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About the Author
CHRIS McCORMICK is the author of the debut story collection Desert Boys, winner of the 2017 Stonewall Book Award-Barbara Gittings Literature Award. Originally from the California side of the Mojave Desert, he earned his MFA at the University of Michigan, where he was the recipient of two Hopwood Awards. He is currently an assistant professor at Minnesota State University, where he's at work on his second book, a novel.

"The Gimmicks is a gorgeous epic that astounds with its scope and beauty. With empathy and humor, McCormick unravels the ties between brotherhood and betrayal, love and abandonment, and the fictions we create to live with the pain of the past. This novel will blow you away." -- Brit Bennett, New York Times bestselling author of The Mothers.

"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

"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

"[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

"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)

"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