Synopses & Reviews
A true story of obsessive love turning to obsessive hate, Give Me Everything You Have chronicles the author's strange and harrowing ordeal at the hands of a former student, a self-styled ""verbal terrorist,"" who began trying, in her words, to ""ruin him."" Hate mail, online postings, and public accusations of plagiarism and sexual misconduct were her weapons of choice and, as with more conventional terrorist weapons, proved remarkably difficult to combat. James Lasdun's account, while terrifying, is told with compassion and humor, and brilliantly succeeds in turning a highly personal story into a profound meditation on subjects as varied as madness, race, Middle East politics, and the meaning of honor and reputation in the Internet age.
"Narrator Robin Sachs delivers a stirring performance as he relates Lasdun's tumultuous account of being threatened and harassed by a former student suffering from extreme obsession. While the story is largely a dark one, Sachs is able to find moments of underplayed humor in Lasdun's writing. Sachs's delivery is steadfast, and his pacing is equally strong; he knows how to command an audience and bring the story to new heights as he manipulates his tone for great dramatic effect. Sachs is a true professional and his performance is thoroughly engaging and a testament to his skill. An FSG hardcover." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Starred Review. ""This subtle, compassionate take on the subject is rife with insights into the current cyberculture's cult of anonymity, as well as the power, failure, and magic of writing."" - Publishers Weekly
One of the ""Most Anticipated: The Great Second-Half 2012 Book Preview"" titles. - The Millions
""A horrifying cautionary tale that reveals the vast dimensions of our vulnerability in the cyber age."" - Kirkus Reviews
""Here is a chilling account of what it is to experience 'verbal terrorism' in the age of email and the Internet - a riveting memoir of James Lasdun's nightmare experience of having been stalked for five years by a deranged former student who is also a virulent anti-Semite. This must be the most informative, the most insightful, and the most beautifully written of any account from the victim's perspective of what has come to be called 'cyberbullying.'"" - Joyce Carol Oates, author of Black Dahlia and White Rose
""James Lasdun's Give Me Everything You Have is an autobiographical work, rare, beautiful, bitter, and profoundly accepting of his own experience: a former female student stalks him viciously for years. The story Lasdun tells is applicable to all human experience."" - Paula Fox
""Give Me Everything You Have is a reminder, as if any were needed, of how easily, since the arrival of the Internet, our peace can be troubled and our good name besmirched."" - J. M. Coetzee, Nobel Prizeâ??winning author of Diary of a Bad Year
""Give Me Everything You Have is a riveting, searingly honest meditation on anti-Semitism, desire, the writing life, and a consciousness held prisoner by a force beyond its reach or control. James Lasdun has taken a dark event from his life and placed it powerfully in the wider realm of literature and myth."" - Michael Greenberg, author of Hurry Down Sunshine
""Give Me Everything You Have is a stunning fusion of memoir, travelogue, and compelling literary self-analysis. With the intuitive and psychological panache of Saul Bellow and the mythic intelligence and sweep of Robert Graves, James Lasdun explores the personal and historic qualities of terror and victimhood. The inquisition on anti-Semitism in all its inglorious aspects is both alarming and profound. It's an original, honest, and courageous book."" - Philip Schultz, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Failure
""This is one of those books that had to be written - for personal reasons on the part of the author, as well as for larger cultural reasons on behalf of the rest of us. James Lasdun's sensitivity to nuance and threat, his commitment to the value of the written word, his awareness of life's ironies, have all been brought to bear on this brilliantly told, painfully gripping story that is at once highly literary and completely true. Its ancestors are Nikolai Gogol and Edgar Allan Poe; its historical moment is precisely now."" - Wendy Lesser
""Give Me Everything You Have is an enthralling, complicated book. What begins as a noir thriller of electronic stalking becomes a deep meditation on the ways in which an unwelcome, irrational attraction changes the life of the person who is desired - permanently."" - Ellen Ullman, author of By Blood
A true story that chronicles the author's strange and harrowing ordeal at the hands of a stalker.
About the Author
James Lasdun was born in London and now lives in upstate New York. He has published two novels, as well as several collections of short stories and poetry. He has been long-listed for the Man Booker Prize and shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times, T. S. Eliot, and Forward prizes in poetry, and he was the winner of the inaugural BBC National Short Story Award. His nonfiction has been published in Harper's Magazine, Granta, and the London Review of Books.
Robin was born and raised in London, England, and studied acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA). After RADA, Robin spent time performing everything from Shakespeare to Tom Stoppard and touring various parts of the known world. His British TV appearances include Brideshead Revisited, Upstairs Downstairs, and Rumpole of the Bailey. He is probably best known in America for his role on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as well as being in several films.