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The Swing Voter of Staten Island (Akashic Urban Surreal Series)

Nersesian, Arthur Author

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Praise for The Swing Voter of Staten Island:

FROM KIRKUS REVIEWS:

Having first dazzled Weird-Lit ultra-hipsters with The Fuck-Up in 1997, Nersesian (Unlubricated, 2004, etc.) rounds out a busy decade with a dystopian epic.

     Combining sci-fi space/time-warping, Unabomber-style political ranting and an overall air of goose-bump paranoia, this is one turbo-charged trip through a version of the 1980s no one could love. A gumbo of Weather Underground, S.L.A. and Black Panther droogies take over New York City in the '70s, splashing dirty bombs helter-skelter. Manhattan basically kaput, the federal government designates a former "military simulation city," a radioactive desert outside Vegas, as the New New York. The geographic layout's a convincing copy, but landmark names are corrupted: "Vampire Stake Building," "Onion Square," "Rock & Filler Center." And the Gangs of New York rule, with the Boroughs divided between Piggers (or We the Peoplers) and Crappers (All Created Equalers), political parties at mutual knifepoint. Into this bedlam drops protagonist Uli, a Manchurian Candidate knock-off programmed by mysterious nefarious forces to assassinate Dropt, a rival candidate to Pigger Mayor Shub. Hizzonner spouts masterful Orwellian jive ("He's intractable in a business that requires a lot of tractoring!"), and the citizens, when not overdosing on creepy new drugs, fantasize returning to the real Manhattan. But much to the fury of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg, Ronald Reagan is running for re-election. If Staten Island's borough president allies with the national Democrats and Reagan loses, nobody gets to go back, because it's only budget-crunching Ronnie who wants to deep-six the fake New York. The loony-tune plot merely serves as a launch pad for Nersesian's meditations on Vietnam-era military insanity, big-city frenzy and the Tower of Babel capacities of language.

    A sharp, strange read: Imagine William Burroughs and Philip K. Dick sharing a needle."

FROM PUBLISHERS WEEKLY:

Nersesian has carved out his niche with novels like The Fuck-Up and Unlubricated about New Yorkers trapped in their own ugly lives. His sixth is similarly sordid but uncharacteristically fantastical. Over the course of a week in a counterfactual 1980, amnesiac protagonist Uli must navigate a reproduction of New York City built in Nevada after the original was destroyed. He quickly learns that the city is divided into territories run by Piggers and Crappers (“political parties, or gangs”) and he has been programmed to assassinate the Crapper candidate for mayor. Manhattan and Brooklyn belong to Crappers, the Bronx and Queens are held by Piggers; Staten Island is independent, and thus constitutes the swing vote in the mayoral and--more importantly--presidential elections. “Rescue City” consists of smaller, cheaper versions of the original: bridges are made of rotten boards, famous landmarks are redubbed corrupt versions of their real names (e.g., Rock and Filler Center for Rockefeller Center and Onion Square for Union Square), and the East River suffers from a clogged drain. Uli mingles with a wide array of desperate characters while trying to uncover his identity and determine what, if anything, he should be fighting for. Nersesian's novel is exceptionally bleak and bewildering, and his fans would expect nothing less.

Up until now, Arthur Nersesian’s six novels (including The Fuck-Up, MTV/Pocket Books, which has sold over 100,000 copies) have focused on the tragicomedy of fin de siècle New York City. Now, in his boldest novel yet, he has broken through into a new landscape that at once fuses the real with the surreal, the psychological with the psychedelic. Actual characters from the 1960s and 1970s—Allen Ginsberg, Timothy Leary, Daniel Ellsberg, and the Berrigan Brothers—are but a few of the folks who populate this alternate version of American history.

The Swing Voter of Staten Island takes place over the course of a week in November 1981. Uli, suffering from amnesia, finds himself on a mission, but isn’t quite sure what it is, who sent him, or even who he is. He ventures across the perilous wilds of New York City, through abandoned neighborhoods and burned-out battlefields. But Uli soon awakens to the awful fact that this isn’t New York City at all. He is a key player in a strange, alternate history of both his city and country.

Uli has found himself trapped in New York, Nevada, isolated in the center of an impenetrable desert—where the US military was able to transform one of its “military situation cities” into a temporary refuge center, designed to resemble New York. While battling to make sense of his surroundings, Uli slowly remembers who he is and his own culpability in creating the current situation.

Arthur Nersesian is the author of six novels, including the smash hit The Fuck-Up (MTV/Pocket Books), Chinese Takeout (HarperCollins), Manhattan Loverboy (Akashic Books), Suicide Casanova (Akashic Books), and dogrun (MTV/Pocket Books). He lives in New York City.

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From the Publisher:

FROM KIRKUS REVIEWS, Oct. 2007: "Having first dazzled Weird-Lit ultra-hipsters with The Fuck-Up in 1997, Nersesian (Unlubricated, 2004, etc.) rounds out a busy decade with a dystopian epic.

Combining sci-fi space/time-warping, Unabomber-style political ranting and an overall air of goose-bump paranoia, this is one turbo-charged trip through a version of the 1980s no one could love. A gumbo of Weather Underground, S.L.A. and Black Panther droogies take over New York City in the '70s, splashing dirty bombs helter-skelter. Manhattan basically kaput, the federal government designates a former "military simulation city," a radioactive desert outside Vegas, as the New New York. The geographic layout's a convincing copy, but landmark names are corrupted: "Vampire Stake Building," "Onion Square," "Rock & Filler Center." And the Gangs of New York rule, with the Boroughs divided between Piggers (or We the Peoplers) and Crappers (All Created Equalers), political parties at mutual knifepoint. Into this bedlam drops protagonist Uli, a Manchurian Candidate knock-off programmed by mysterious nefarious forces to assassinate Dropt, a rival candidate to Pigger Mayor Shub. Hizzonner spouts masterful Orwellian jive ("He's intractable in a business that requires a lot of tractoring!"), and the citizens, when not overdosing on creepy new drugs, fantasize returning to the real Manhattan. But much to the fury of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg, Ronald Reagan is running for re-election. If Staten Island's borough president allies with the national Democrats and Reagan loses, nobody gets to go back, because it's only budget-crunching Ronnie who wants to deep-six the fake New York. The loony-tune plot merely serves as a launch pad for Nersesian's meditations on Vietnam-era military insanity, big-city frenzy and the Tower of Babel capacities of language.

A sharp, strange read: Imagine William Burroughs and Philip K. Dick sharing a needle."

About the Author:

Arthur Nersesian (born 1958) is an American novelist, playwright, and poet. Neresian is of Armenian and Irish descent. He was born and raised in New York City. His novels include The Fuck-up, Manhattan Loverboy, dogrun, Chinese Takeout, Suicide Casanova and Unlubricated. He has also published a collection of plays, East Village Tetralogy. He has written three books of poems and one book of plays. In 2005, Nersesian received the Anahid Literary Prize for Armenian Literature for his novel Unlubricated. Nersesian is the managing editor of the literary magazine, The Portable Lower East Side, and was an English teacher at Hostos Community College, City University of New York, in the South Bronx.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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Book Description Akashic Books,U.S., United States, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 221 x 142 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Praise for The Swing Voter of Staten Island: FROM KIRKUS REVIEWS: Having first dazzled Weird-Lit ultra-hipsters with T he Fuck-Up in 1997, Nersesian ( Unlubricated, 2004, etc.) rounds out a busy decade with a dystopian epic. Combining sci-fi space/time-warping, Unabomber-style political ranting and an overall air of goose-bump paranoia, this is one turbo-charged trip through a version of the 1980s no one could love. A gumbo of Weather Underground, S.L.A. and Black Panther droogies take over New York City in the 70s, splashing dirty bombs helter-skelter. Manhattan basically kaput, the federal government designates a former military simulation city, a radioactive desert outside Vegas, as the New New York. The geographic layout s a convincing copy, but landmark names are corrupted: Vampire Stake Building, Onion Square, Rock Filler Center. And the Gangs of New York rule, with the Boroughs divided between Piggers (or We the Peoplers) and Crappers (All Created Equalers), political parties at mutual knifepoint. Into this bedlam drops protagonist Uli, a Manchurian Candidate knock-off programmed by mysterious nefarious forces to assassinate Dropt, a rival candidate to Pigger Mayor Shub. Hizzonner spouts masterful Orwellian jive ( He s intractable in a business that requires a lot of tractoring! ), and the citizens, when not overdosing on creepy new drugs, fantasize returning to the real Manhattan. But much to the fury of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg, Ronald Reagan is running for re-election. If Staten Island s borough president allies with the national Democrats and Reagan loses, nobody gets to go back, because it s only budget-crunching Ronnie who wants to deep-six the fake New York. The loony-tune plot merely serves as a launch pad for Nersesian s meditations on Vietnam-era military insanity, big-city frenzy and the Tower of Babel capacities of language. A sharp, strange read: Imagine William Burroughs and Philip K. Dick sharing a needle. FROM PUBLISHERS WEEKLY: Nersesian has carved out his niche with novels like The Fuck-Up and Unlubricated about New Yorkers trapped in their own ugly lives. His sixth is similarly sordid but uncharacteristically fantastical. Over the course of a week in a counterfactual 1980, amnesiac protagonist Uli must navigate a reproduction of New York City built in Nevada after the original was destroyed. He quickly learns that the city is divided into territories run by Piggers and Crappers ( political parties, or gangs ) and he has been programmed to assassinate the Crapper candidate for mayor. Manhattan and Brooklyn belong to Crappers, the Bronx and Queens are held by Piggers; Staten Island is independent, and thus constitutes the swing vote in the mayoral and--more importantly--presidential elections. Rescue City consists of smaller, cheaper versions of the original: bridges are made of rotten boards, famous landmarks are redubbed corrupt versions of their real names (e.g., Rock and Filler Center for Rockefeller Center and Onion Square for Union Square), and the East River suffers from a clogged drain. Uli mingles with a wide array of desperate characters while trying to uncover his identity and determine what, if anything, he should be fighting for. Nersesian s novel is exceptionally bleak and bewildering, and his fans would expect nothing less. Up until now, Arthur Nersesian s six novels (including The Fuck-Up, MTV/Pocket Books, which has sold over 100,000 copies) have focused on the tragicomedy of fin de siecle New York City. Now, in his boldest novel yet, he has broken through into a new landscape that at once fuses the real with the surreal, the psychological with the psychedelic. Actual characters from the 1960s and 1970s--Allen Ginsberg, Timothy Leary, Daniel Ellsberg, and the Berrigan Brothers--are. Bookseller Inventory # FLT9781933354347

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Book Description Akashic Books,U.S., United States, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 221 x 142 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Praise for The Swing Voter of Staten Island: FROM KIRKUS REVIEWS: Having first dazzled Weird-Lit ultra-hipsters with T he Fuck-Up in 1997, Nersesian ( Unlubricated, 2004, etc.) rounds out a busy decade with a dystopian epic. Combining sci-fi space/time-warping, Unabomber-style political ranting and an overall air of goose-bump paranoia, this is one turbo-charged trip through a version of the 1980s no one could love. A gumbo of Weather Underground, S.L.A. and Black Panther droogies take over New York City in the 70s, splashing dirty bombs helter-skelter. Manhattan basically kaput, the federal government designates a former military simulation city, a radioactive desert outside Vegas, as the New New York. The geographic layout s a convincing copy, but landmark names are corrupted: Vampire Stake Building, Onion Square, Rock Filler Center. And the Gangs of New York rule, with the Boroughs divided between Piggers (or We the Peoplers) and Crappers (All Created Equalers), political parties at mutual knifepoint. Into this bedlam drops protagonist Uli, a Manchurian Candidate knock-off programmed by mysterious nefarious forces to assassinate Dropt, a rival candidate to Pigger Mayor Shub. Hizzonner spouts masterful Orwellian jive ( He s intractable in a business that requires a lot of tractoring! ), and the citizens, when not overdosing on creepy new drugs, fantasize returning to the real Manhattan. But much to the fury of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg, Ronald Reagan is running for re-election. If Staten Island s borough president allies with the national Democrats and Reagan loses, nobody gets to go back, because it s only budget-crunching Ronnie who wants to deep-six the fake New York. The loony-tune plot merely serves as a launch pad for Nersesian s meditations on Vietnam-era military insanity, big-city frenzy and the Tower of Babel capacities of language. A sharp, strange read: Imagine William Burroughs and Philip K. Dick sharing a needle. FROM PUBLISHERS WEEKLY: Nersesian has carved out his niche with novels like The Fuck-Up and Unlubricated about New Yorkers trapped in their own ugly lives. His sixth is similarly sordid but uncharacteristically fantastical. Over the course of a week in a counterfactual 1980, amnesiac protagonist Uli must navigate a reproduction of New York City built in Nevada after the original was destroyed. He quickly learns that the city is divided into territories run by Piggers and Crappers ( political parties, or gangs ) and he has been programmed to assassinate the Crapper candidate for mayor. Manhattan and Brooklyn belong to Crappers, the Bronx and Queens are held by Piggers; Staten Island is independent, and thus constitutes the swing vote in the mayoral and--more importantly--presidential elections. Rescue City consists of smaller, cheaper versions of the original: bridges are made of rotten boards, famous landmarks are redubbed corrupt versions of their real names (e.g., Rock and Filler Center for Rockefeller Center and Onion Square for Union Square), and the East River suffers from a clogged drain. Uli mingles with a wide array of desperate characters while trying to uncover his identity and determine what, if anything, he should be fighting for. Nersesian s novel is exceptionally bleak and bewildering, and his fans would expect nothing less. Up until now, Arthur Nersesian s six novels (including The Fuck-Up, MTV/Pocket Books, which has sold over 100,000 copies) have focused on the tragicomedy of fin de siecle New York City. Now, in his boldest novel yet, he has broken through into a new landscape that at once fuses the real with the surreal, the psychological with the psychedelic. Actual characters from the 1960s and 1970s--Allen Ginsberg, Timothy Leary, Daniel Ellsberg, and the Berrigan Brothers--are. Bookseller Inventory # FLT9781933354347

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Nersesian, Arthur Author
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