The University of Wisconsin Press
Love and Fatigue in America
“Roger King’s disturbing, delightful odyssey encompasses many subjects—love, loss, health, illness, disconnection, and most of all, the modern American psyche: its roots and its rootlessness. A profound and wonderfully original book.”
—Joan Wickersham, author of The Suicide Index
Love and Fatigue in America records an Englishman’s decade-long journey through his newly adopted country in the company of a mystifying illness and a charismatic dog.
When he receives an unexpected invitation from an unfamiliar American university, he embraces it as a triumphant new beginning. Instead, on arrival, he is stricken with a persistent inability to stand up or think straight, and things quickly go wrong. Diagnosed with ME disease—chronic fatigue syndrome—he moves restlessly from state to state, woman to woman, and eccentric doctor to eccentric doctor, in a search for a love and a life suited to his new condition. The journey is simultaneously brave, absurd, and instructive.
Finding himself prostrate on beds and couches from Los Alamos to Albany, he hears the intimate stories offered by those he encounters—their histories, hurts, and hopes—and from these fragments an unsentimental map emerges of the inner life of a nation. Disability has shifted his interest in America from measuring its opportunities to taking the measure of its humanity. Forced to consider for himself the meaning of a healthy life and how best to nurture it, he incidentally delivers a report on the health of a country
By turns insightful, comic, affecting, and profound, Roger King’s Love and Fatigue in America briskly compresses an illness, a nation, and an era through masterly blending of literary forms. In a work that defies categorization, and never loses its pace or poise, the debilitated narrator is, ironically, the most lively and fully awake figure in the book.
“Few writers dare to try the scope of Roger King, from the intensely personal to the universal, and even fewer succeed. But King does. Love and Fatigue in America manages to offer three rewarding narratives at once in a book that is equally novel and memoir. He has done something astonishing.”—Helen Benedict, author of Sand Queen
“[An] extraordinary autobiographical novel. . . .The narrative expertly cobbles together unexpected moments of poetry; meditations on illness, war, and ambition; and vignettes, which—like the narrator himself—alternately admit devastating failures and sing with triumph.”—Publishers Weekly
Roger King grew up in London. He is author of four previous novels: Horizontal Hotel, Written on a Stranger's Map, Sea Level, and A Girl from Zanzibar. He has worked extensively in Africa and Asia, and has held university posts in both international development and creative writing. Since 1991 he has suffered from ME disease, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome. He lives in Leverett, Massachusetts.
For more information regarding publicity and reviews contact our publicity manager, phone: (608) 263-0734, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
LC: 2011042648 PR
254 pp. 5 1/2 x 8 1/4
Cloth $26.95 t
e-book $14.95 t
Adobe Digital Edition
About our e-books
Printing and cut/paste allowed, access on six different devices.
Click here for a further explanation of the shopping cart feature.
A trade imprint of the University of Wisconsin Press
"What does it mean to live in between? Not only between geographical locations, but between health and illness, commitment and freedom, love and loss? In this wry and subtle autobio-graphical novel, Roger King maps the territory of his inner life onto the American continent. The genre-crossing result is, like the work of W.G. Sebald, surprising and dazzling."
—Andrea Barrett, author of The Air We Breathe and winner of the National Book Award
Home | Books | Journals | Events | Textbooks | Authors | Related | Search | Order | Contact
If you have trouble accessing any page in this web site, contact our Web manager.
Updated March 29, 2012© 2012, The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System