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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
<div> A compulsively readable, deeply human novel that examines our most basic and unquenchable emotion: want. </DIV> <div>With his critically acclaimed first novel, Jonathan Miles was widely praised as a comic genius “after something bigger” (David Ulin, <I>Los Angeles Times</I>) whose fiction was “not just philosophically but emotionally rewarding” (Richard Russo, <I>New York Times Book Review</I>, front cover).<br><BR>Now, in his much anticipated second novel, <I>Want Not</I>, Miles takes a giant leap forward with this highly inventive and corrosively funny story of our times, a three-pronged tale of human excess that sifts through the detritus of several disparate lives—lost loves, blown chances, countless words and deeds misdirected or misunderstood—all conjoined in their come-hell-or-high-water search for fulfillment.<BR><BR>As the novel opens on Thanksgiving Day, readers are telescoped into three different worlds in various states of disrepair—a young freegan couple living off the grid in New York City; a once-prominent linguist, sacked at midlife by the dissolution of his marriage and his father’s losing battle with Alzheimer’s; and a self-made debt-collecting magnate, whose brute talent for squeezing money out of unlikely places has yielded him a royal existence, trophy wife included.<BR><BR>Want and desire propel these characters forward toward something, anything, <I>more</I>, until their worlds collide, briefly, randomly, yet irrevocably, in a shattering ending that will haunt readers long after the last page is turned.<BR><BR>With a satirist’s eye and a romantic’s heart, Miles captures the morass and comedy of contemporary life in all its excess. Bold, unblinking, unforgettable in its irony and pathos,<I> Want Not</I> is a wicked, bighearted literary novel that confirms the arrival of a major voice in American fiction.<br></DIV>