The Year of Broken Glass



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The Year of Broken Glass


By Joe Denham


AVAILABLE
0-88971-252-2
978-0-88971-252-2
Nightwood Editions
5.5 x 8.5 - 326 pages
Paperback - $24.95
April 2011

Delving with authority into the bullet-ridden, the near-divine and the shortcomings of the heart, this is a flat-out terrific book.
—Adam Lewis Schroeder

The Year of Broken Glass is as startlingly original as the legendary fishing float that captivates its characters, and is as permeated with fragile beauty as the coastal and oceanic worlds it both celebrates and mourns.
—Angie Abdou


Joe Denham’s debut novel The Year of Broken Glass follows struggling crab fisherman Francis “Ferris” Wichbaun’s journey across the Pacific Ocean to deliver a legendary glass fishing float to an enigmatic, high-paying collector. Against a backdrop of worldwide seismic devastation, Ferris is forced to confront increasing concern for his two families—his wife Anna and their son Willow, and his girlfriend Jin Su and their baby daughter Emily—as well as pervasive feelings of disappointment and disillusionment. In the midst of his contemplation, he becomes entangled in both a romantic affair with his travelling companion and an ancient legend that seems to offer the possibility of redemption.

Denham’s poetic background is evident in the novel’s entrancing imagery and thematic complexity, yet in his transition to prose he has also succeeded in crafting a unique, unpredictable plot and intriguing, sincerely rendered characters. Haunted by environmental degradation and human suffering, Denham affixes the carefree Wedding Guest in all of us with his glittering prose and weaves a story that is both sobering and compelling.