A novel by Laird Hunt
September 1, 2006 • 5 x 7.5 • 256 pages • 978-1-56689-187-5
A spine-tingling, intricate tale of love, betrayal, and psychological gamesmanship in the wake of 9/11.
Henry, a New Yorker left destitute by circumstance and obsession, is plucked from vagrancy by a shadowy outfit whose primary business is arranging for staged murders of anxiety-ridden clients unhinged by the “events downtown” and seeking to experience—and live through—their own carefully executed assassinations. When Henry joins this nefarious crew, which includes a beautiful blonde tattooist named Tulip, contortionist twins, and a woman referred to only as “the knockout,” he becomes inextricably linked to its ringleader, the mysterious herring connoisseur Mr. Kindt, whose identity can be traced through twists and turns all the way back to the corpse depicted in Rembrandt’s The Anatomy Lesson. Substantive, stylish, and darkly comic, The Exquisite is a skillful dissection of reality, human connection, and the very nature of existence.
About the Author
Called “one of the most talented young writers on the American scene today” by Paul Auster, Laird Hunt is the author of five genre-bending novels: The Impossibly, The Exquisite, Indiana, Indiana, Ray of the Star, and Kind One. His books have been translated and released in France, Italy, and Japan, and The Impossibly is available as an audio book through Iambik Audio. His work has also appeared in several recent anthologies including Noise: Fiction Inspired by Sonic Youth, in which the Village Voice says “Laird Hunt’s ‘Kissability,’ in its distillation of inchoate teenage longing, is . . . as lovely a passage as anything in pop music.”
Born in Singapore and educated at Indiana University and The Sorbonne in Paris, Hunt has also lived in Tokyo, London, The Hague, New York City, and on an Indiana farm. A former press officer at the United Nations and current faculty member at the University of Denver, he now lives in Boulder, Colorado.
“Strange, original, and utterly brilliant—Laird Hunt is one of the most talented young writers on the American scene today.” —Paul Auster