Advance Praise for ‘The Hammerhead Chronicles’

The Hammerhead Chronicles (11/15) received high praise from some phenomenal authors. Read their full blurbs and reviews, and preorder today through your favorite bookseller.

“Deft and engrossing, The Hammerhead Chronicles illuminates the threads that connect us as communities, families, friends, and even enemies.  Gould, with his lucent prose and wise insights into the human heart, gives us characters as real and conflicted as any to be found in fiction.  Their stories become a luminous weaving of fate and will, grief and desire, which sheds light on the families to which we’re born, the families we make, and the families we find along the way.” Taylor Brown, author of Wingwalkers

“This ebullient, big-hearted book had me at the first sentence. The voices are so varied and hilarious and sad and compelling. When one of them breaks through the barrier between earth and the afterlife it just seems a natural extension of this novel’s boundless innovation, its devotion to language, and its love for all the broken people living and speaking in it. A joyful, complicated book made with a constellation of powerful and intimate voices.” —Rebecca Lee, author of Bobcat and Other Stories

”A wild ride through the ups and downs of family and friendship, Scott Gould’s The Hammerhead Chronicles is as big-hearted as it is hilarious. Skillfully weaving no less than seven points of view, including a ghost, and not excluding creepy infestations, Gould’s novel wittily spoofs the Southern gothic tale and made me laugh out loud.” Karen Brennan, author of Television, a Memoir

“Scott Gould’s newest book, The Hammerhead Chronicles, advances his reputation as a uniquely inventive contemporary master of the comic tradition in Southern literature. The storytelling here sizzles with wit and wild play, with plot that terrifyingly and thrillingly jumps the tracks, and with perfect storms of reliable and unreliable revelations. This dynamic novel unforgettably portrays the processes of recovering from old and new injuries. “Only trouble is interesting,” one of the key characters says about the uncannily transformative difficulties that arrive at the worst moments in life – every page of Gould’s wonderful novel embodies this simple, powerful truth.” Kevin McIlvoy, author of One Kind Favor

“Beautifully crafted, told in a chorus of original voices, The Hammerhead Chronicles evokes its characters in such a way as to render them somehow next-door familiar but also as mysterious and complicated as life itself. These people are just like the rest of us, in other words, great big messes one and all, and Scott Gould is honest and clear-eyed and willing to take risks in his rendering. I read these pages with serious admiration.” —Michael Knight, author of Eveningland and At Briarwood School for Girls

“Scott Gould understands two great truths of southern storytelling: everyone is weird, and comedy and tragedy always hold hands. He is also a great novelist who knows that how a story is shuffled decides what it means. This book reads so fast and so funny that you don’t mind when it grabs you first by the lapels and then by something inside your chest.”  Elise Blackwell, author of Hunger and The Lower Quarter

“In his latest novel The Hammerhead Chronicles, Scott Gould captures with keen insight and uncanny observation the complexities of human relationships and their inevitable accompaniments of hilarity and heartbreak. In typical Scott Gould fashion, this book is side-splittingly funny, illuminating the absurdities of everyday life and the little triumphs that keep us going in spite of them. Gould’s novel is a masterclass on point of view and voice, beginning with Claude, a recently widowed, almost divorced, college professor, who is chronically not particularly happy and has a fondness for PBR and Jim Beam, which his favorite, salty bartender, the diminutive, tattooed LeJeune, is ever ready to serve him. Claude’s best friend and coworker is Samuel, a Black mathematician who generally keeps to himself but has an axe to grind with twin, racist, gay, bookshop owners, Wallace and Wade. Wallace and Wade are too busy running their lily-white bookstore to notice a heap of trouble brewing right under their turned-up noses. Cheryl, Claude’s almost ex-sister-in-law, wrangles with her own unhappy marriage and the recent death of her sister, Claude’s almost ex-wife Peg. Cheryl has recently taken in Marlene, Claude and Peg’s disinterested, brooding daughter who wants nothing to do with anyone but her surly, skinny, white supremacist boyfriend Colt. And then there’s Peg, the newly departed, who observes them all from someplace above with great interest but no influence on the storm clouds brewing among them as they each search for better, more fulfilling lives. Oh, and rats! This book is populated with a colony of beady-eyed, yellow-toothed rats. Beyond the humor, this is a poignant story about the beauty of life and the enduring powers of hope and love. I loved this book!” Michel Stone, author of The Iguana Tree and Border Child

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