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Ann Arbor, MI, 48103
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Dzanc Books is nonprofit press specializing in literary fiction and nonfiction. In addition to publishing activities, Dzanc Books also supports the Disquiet International Literary Program.

The Weight of Nothing, by Steven Gillis

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The Weight of Nothing, by Steven Gillis


The Weight of Nothing, by Steven Gillis

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Memory. Regret. Revenge. Forgiveness.

Steven Gillis’s second novel, The Weight of Nothing, explores these issues through the eyes of Bailey Finne, a gifted pianist who has nonetheless forsaken his talent to become a perpetual graduate student in art history. Niles Kelly, his somnambulistic friend with Albert Camus for a muse, is the heir to a fortune he has rejected, and he carries the burden of the unresolved deaths of both his father and lover at the hands of a mysterious bomber. Together, Bailey and Niles journey to Algiers to confront that which has haunted each of them for years. Following a tragic end to his time in North Africa, Bailey returns to his hometown in an effort to reconcile his familial losses, lack of ambition, and love for his girlfriend, Elizabeth.

Gillis skillfully weaves this compelling tale of mystery, love, music, and art into a dramatic story that unfolds as a spiritual odyssey in search of truth and redemption in the midst of unspeakable violence.


“Readers . . . will enjoy the improbable but beguilingly mystical conclusion.” —Publishers Weekly

“The author’s tale is one of philosophical angst and emotional discovery. On another level, the book has a fascinating plot that weaves together the lives of Bailey Finne, a talented musician whose life is characterized by inertia, and his friend Niles Kelly, who eschews his wealthy background for a woman he ultimately loses. Gillis’s story enmeshes the secondary characters in the spheres of personal connection of these two men, to create a highly engaging and moving tale of friends who are transformed by tragedy.” —ForeWord Reviews


Steven Gillis is the author of four novels and two short story collections. He is the co-founder of Dzanc Books.