Utilizing an innovative mashup of genres, ranging from pulp fiction, dark comedy, and metafiction, This Book Is Not for You charts the actions of nineteen-year-old Neptune, a misfit and punk haunted by the death of his parents. Having fallen in with an anarchist group determined to blow up a university building, he steals the dynamite instead, igniting an entirely different brand of trouble: the murder of his mentor; a three-way manhunt; and the mystery of the Ghost Machine, a walkman that replays snippets from his own twisted past.
Told in a nonstop chain of Chapter Ones, Daniel Hoyt’s debut novel explores the clash between chaos and calm, the instinct for self-destruction and the longing for redemption.
PRAISE FOR THIS BOOK IS NOT FOR YOU
“I stayed up all night listening to Neptune—part Holden Caulfield, part Huck Finn, part someone I’ve never met anywhere. Sharp-edged, defiant, profane, and brutally funny, he got to me in spite of himself.”
—Kim Church, author of Byrd
“The energy of Hoyt's prose carried me until I was reading at a pace I never do, and panting at that. A page-turner experimental novel.”
—Carmiel Banasky, author of The Suicide of Claire Bishop
“This is not a confession, but a caustic blend of pulp and metafiction that surrounds a haunted Walkman, a murder, wishful anarchists and a constant reset for the reader. Every chapter is chapter one, but Hoyt knows just how to pull the strings..”
—Andrew Sullivan, author of Waste
"This Book Is Not For You introduces the world to Neptune—a self-destructive and overly self-aware hero for our times. Neptune’s misadventures are funny, harrowing, thrilling, and sweet, and the novel’s recurring Chapter Ones give a fresh start. Neptune’s bad decisions might make you cringe, but you’ll cheer for him . . . . An exciting and inventive novel."
—Craig Finn of The Hold Steady
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Daniel Hoyt is an associate professor at Kansas State University. His first story collection, Then We Saw the Flames, won the Juniper Prize for Fiction and was published by the University of Massachusetts Press. His recent work has appeared in The Iowa Review, The Missouri Review, The Sun, and other magazines. He lives in Manhattan, Kansas, with his wife and son.