[Download this book for free on Amazon Kindle now through Wednesday, September 25th.]
Well, it took a lot more work than I’d anticipated, but I’ve finally revamped and completely rewritten the old book and given her a new face [note: the actual size was too big to upload here, so I had to truncate the cover a little. Sorry, baby; but you’re beautiful still]:
An incomprehensible admission, a horrifying deed … A secret with the power to destroy, and a superhuman father with beast-like brilliance …
At age thirteen, five years after his mother’s death, Joel Gasteneau is beaten so brutally by his father that he almost doesn’t survive. Yet he makes himself live, his strength of will extraordinary even then, and he runs away from home.
Alone and comforted only by running and the bloodless beauty of math, he makes his own way, rising eventually to the Green Berets: an elite athlete who nevertheless cannot quite outdistance himself from the torments of his childhood.
Now, at thirty-three, consumed by doubt and a growing sense of hypochondria, he resolves at last to follow through on an idea he first thought of when he was a child: to seek out a piece of evidence that shows with certainty God’s hand at work upon the earth. But in seeking this evidence, he’s stricken by an enigmatic illness that almost kills him: and there, inside the fevered meat of his brain, he unearths a memory so chilling that his life is forever altered.
One of the most challenging novels of the last decade, Pale Criminal is at its core an inquiry into godless morality and human virtue, an exploration of how we live, part mystery story, part literary crime novel combing the surreal imagery of Nabokov with the psychological complexity of Dostoevsky — a metaphysical thriller of mind-spinning intrigue and a philosophical odyssey into the most fundamental questions.
This book is an inquiry into human virtue.
The title is a direct reference to a chapter from Nietszche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra — and the idea of the Pale Criminal indeed appears, in context of Nietszche, in Chapter 10 of the novel.
The original version of this book took me nearly nine years to write — the rewrite took another year — but I’ll be eternally grateful if YOU, reader, with your confounding, beautiful, golden silence, downloaded it now (for free through Wednesday, September 25th).