If you mashed together Kazuo Ishiguro's The Buried Giant, Shane Jones's Light Boxes, and Robert Hill's The Remnants, you'd get something like this insanely excellent debut novel from Zachary Schomburg.
Part whimsical fairy tale, part dark chimera, part astute dissertation on death, part droll study of human nature, Mammother is all genius. It is otherworldly and fantastical, and Schomberg's talent will leave you thrilled, breathless, and heartsick for more. Just dive in blindly — do it now! Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
The people of Pie Time are suffering from God’s Finger, a mysterious plague that leaves its victims dead with a big hole through their chests. In each hole is a random consumer product. Mano Medium, a sensitive, young cigarette-factory worker in love, does his part by quitting the factory to work double-time as Pie Time’s replacement barber and butcher, and by holding the things found in the holes of the newly dead. However, the more people die, the bigger Mano becomes. XO, the power-hungry corporation bent on overtaking Pie Time, and Father Mothers, the bumbling priest, have their own ideas about how to capitalize on God’s Finger. By contrast, and powered by honoring his own lost loves, Mano fights to resist this exploitation by teaching death to those who can’t afford to survive it. As Pie Time and Mano both grow irrevocably, Mano must make a decision about how he can best fit into his own life. With a large cast of unusual characters, each struggling with their own complex and tangled relationships to death, money, and love, Mammother is a fabulist's tale of how we hold on and how we let go in a rapidly growing world.
About the Author
Zachary Schomburg is the author of four books of poetry, which have cumulatively sold 13,000 copies: The Man Suit (Black Ocean 2007); Scary, No Scary (Black Ocean 2009); Fjords, vol 1 (Black Ocean 2012); and The Book of Joshua (Black Ocean 2014). He is also the publisher of Octopus Books, a small poetry press. He lives in Portland, OR. Mammother is his first novel.