Marc Bojanowski / Journeyman
From the author of The Dog Fighter, hailed by Geoff Dyer as “the most exciting debut…by an American writer since Eugenides’s The Virgin Suicides,” comes Journeyman, a tightly wound novel by Marc Bojanowski about dwelling, building, belonging, love, and the value of a place to call home.
Nolan Jackson is a journeyman carpenter by trade and a wanderer by nature. Set in 2007, while fellow Americans fight in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Nolan builds tract homes across California, traveling between jobs. Following a shocking workplace accident in his temporary home of Las Vegas, he uproots himself from the tentative relationships he has made and heads west towards the ocean. On his way he passes through his brother’s town, where circumstances force him to stay put. Bereft of his trailer and his tools, Nolan turns to the task of building the foundations of a meaningful life. The specter of war and questions of the Western-film notions of masculinity are woven throughout the novel; from the damage to Nolan’s family by the Vietnam War in which his father fought, to the ubiquity and consequence of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, to slow unraveling of his brother’s marriage and mental state, to the mysterious series of arsons being set around their small town.
One of “31 Brilliant Books That You Really Must Read This Spring.” — Buzzfeed
“A rich but unrefined seam of allegorical meaningfulness [runs] through this pleasing tale.” — The Irish Times
“Bojanowski keeps it simple … his direct, unassuming style keeps the reader engaged in the ultimately optimistic story of Nolan’s attempt to overcome the contradictions in his life.” — Herald Scotland
Marc Bojanowski graduated from the University of California at Berkeley and received his MFA in creative writing from the New School. His writing has appeared in The Literary Review, McSweeney’s and Granta. His first novel, The Dog Fighter, was a Finalist for the New York Public Library Young Lions Award.
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