A Floating Life

A Novel

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About The Book

Following a harrowing job interview in a steam room, a nameless narrator leaves his youthful dreams behind. He finds himself at a party talking to a woman he doesn’t know, who proves to be his wife. Soon separated from her but still living in the same apartment, he is threatened by a litigious dachshund and saddled with a stubborn case of erectile dysfunction in a world that seems held together by increasingly mercurial laws and elusive boundaries. His relationship deepens with an elderly Dutch model maker named Pecheur, whose miniature boats are erratically offered for sale in a hard-to-find shop called The Floating World. Enlivened by Pecheur’s dream to tame the destructive forces of nature, the narrator begins to find his bearings.

With quiet humor, A Floating Life charts the course of a middle-age crisis through images that surprise and disorient, leading to a “climax [that] resolves all satisfyingly and surprisingly” (Booklist). A Floating Life is a rollicking, unforgettable, and inventive journey—and it is also a source of insight, solace, and inspiration that will delight lovers of Kafka, Murakami, and Gabriel García Márquez.

Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Arcade, Yucca, and Good Books imprints, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in fiction—novels, novellas, political and medical thrillers, comedy, satire, historical fiction, romance, erotic and love stories, mystery, classic literature, folklore and mythology, literary classics including Shakespeare, Dumas, Wilde, Cather, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

Product Details
  • Publisher: Arcade (November 2014)
  • Length: 304 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781628724226

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Raves and Reviews

"The climax resolves all satisfyingly and surprisingly. The elements of the picaresque and magic realism, blended with quirky, surreal humor, should appeal to readers with a taste for the literary and the strange.”
—Booklist

“Odd, offbeat, and strangely shimmering.”
—Kirkus Reviews

"[Crawford's] refreshing style brings surprise and fun back into fiction.”
—New York Journal of Books

“Tad Crawford is an utterly fearless writer who will and does go wherever his wonderfully anarchic imagination takes him.”
—Howard Frank Mosher, author of A Stranger in the Kingdom

“Through this fantastical saga of privation, like Odysseus’s voyage with homecoming, like Dante’s tour without a guide or a Beatrice, Crawford’s narrator recounts his amazing adventures in a mesmerizing diction of long-suffering cool.”
—Nelson W. Aldrich Jr., author of Old Money

“By turns charming and ominous, whimsical and philosophical, A Floating Life is a multilayered shape-shifting miracle of a first novel.”
—Melvin Jules Bukiet, author of Strange Fire

“Equal parts science fiction, magic realism, and hard-boiled detective story, A Floating Life is a dizzying journey . . . a seamless, spellbinding narrative in the lineage of Borges, Castañeda, and Philip K. Dick.”
—Kenneth Goldsmith, author of I'll Be Your Mirror and Uncreative Writing

“A haunting, unusual, sui generis, and wonderfully sustained novel that also manages to be hilarious. I loved it.”
—Nick Lyons, author of Spring Creek

"The climax resolves all satisfyingly and surprisingly. The elements of the picaresque and magic realism, blended with quirky, surreal humor, should appeal to readers with a taste for the literary and the strange.”
—Booklist

“Odd, offbeat, and strangely shimmering.”
—Kirkus Reviews

"[Crawford's] refreshing style brings surprise and fun back into fiction.”
—New York Journal of Books

“Tad Crawford is an utterly fearless writer who will and does go wherever his wonderfully anarchic imagination takes him.”
—Howard Frank Mosher, author of A Stranger in the Kingdom

“Through this fantastical saga of privation, like Odysseus’s voyage with homecoming, like Dante’s tour without a guide or a Beatrice, Crawford’s narrator recounts his amazing adventures in a mesmerizing diction of long-suffering cool.”
—Nelson W. Aldrich Jr., author of Old Money

“By turns charming and ominous, whimsical and philosophical, A Floating Life is a multilayered shape-shifting miracle of a first novel.”
—Melvin Jules Bukiet, author of Strange Fire

“Equal parts science fiction, magic realism, and hard-boiled detective story, A Floating Life is a dizzying journey . . . a seamless, spellbinding narrative in the lineage of Borges, Castañeda, and Philip K. Dick.”
—Kenneth Goldsmith, author of I'll Be Your Mirror and Uncreative Writing

“A haunting, unusual, sui generis, and wonderfully sustained novel that also manages to be hilarious. I loved it.”
—Nick Lyons, author of Spring Creek

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