The Subprimes

Product Details
Harper Perennial
Publish Date
5.2 X 8.1 X 0.9 inches | 0.5 pounds

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About the Author

Karl Taro Greenfeld is the author of seven previous books, including the novel Triburbia and the acclaimed memoir Boy Alone. His award-winning writing has appeared in Harper's Magazine, The Atlantic, The Paris Review, Best American Short Stories 2009 and 2013, and The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2012. Born in Kobe, Japan, he has lived in Paris, Hong Kong, and Tokyo, and currently lives in Pacific Palisades, California, with his wife, Silka, and their daughters, Esmee and Lola.


"It's hard for a fiction writer to know how to engage the present American moment. This powder-keg culture might seem like rich material, but dramatizing it is harder than it appears. Greenfeld is one of the writers we can watch trying to figure it out." -- Jonathan Dee, Harper's

"Greenfeld has produced a fascinating novel about life in the age of economic uncertainty. It's a colorful tale of characters living on the edge combined with sharp social insights." -- Walter Isaacson

"The Subprimes holds up a funhouse-mirror version of ourselves and our era. Karl Taro Greenfeld has written a masterful, viciously funny satire of our times, one that we ignore at our peril." -- Ben Fountain

"A little Occupy, a little Ed Abbey, and a good deal of hope for solidarity in a screwed-up world -- The Subprimes is a superhero story for the rest of us." -- Bill McKibben

"Sharply observed and engrossing, The Subprimes depicts a future that is simultaneously absurd...and plausible. It would be too scary to read if it weren't so entertaining." -- Edan Lepucki

"With sharp and indicting fury and humor, profound compassion, deep respect, and literary prowess, Greenfeld has written a scorching, twenty-first-century Grapes of Wrath that perfectly captures our time's suffering and potentially apocalyptic greed and folly." -- Booklist (starred review)

"Set in a meticulously, terrifyingly imagined all-too-near future, The Subprimes is a potent cocktail of North American myth, equal parts John Steinbeck and Margaret Atwood, with a dash of benzene." -- William Gibson

"The Subprimes admirably -- amazingly -- superimposes all the populist instincts of The Grapes of Wrath onto a dystopian future that is all too visible from our current moment. Greenfeld's compassion and understanding -- this novel's beating heart -- are what grabbed me most." -- Charles Bock

"Greenfeld has a tendency to lean toward parody in his satiric style, but here he employs enough authenticity to terrify, enough black humor to disarm the story's inherent pessimism, and a surprising admiration for faith in its myriad forms." -- Kirkus