5 Questions with Eli Horowitz

new worldThis Tuesday we welcome Eli Horowitz back to City Lights Books, this time to discuss and read from his new novel, The New World (from FSG and co-authored with Chris Adrian). His answers to our 5 questions are below.

Event: Tuesday, April 21 @ 7pm. Eli Horowitz celebrating the release of The New World at City Lights Bookstore.

About the Book: Jorie has just received some terrible news. A phone full of missed calls and sympathetic text messages seem to indicate that her husband, Jim, a chaplain at the hospital where she works as a surgeon, is dead. Only, not quite—rather, his head has been removed from his body and cryogenically frozen. Jim awakes to find himself in an altogether unique situation, to say the least: his body gone but his consciousness alive, his only companion a mysterious, disembodied voice.

In this surreal and unexpectedly moving work, Chris Adrian and Eli Horowitz spin a tale of loss and adjustment, death and reawakening. Simultaneously fabulist and achingly human, The New World finds Jorie grieving the husband she knew while Jim wrestles with the meaning of life after death. Conceived in collaboration with Atavist Books, The New World interrogates love and loss in the digital era.

About the Author: Eli Horowitz was the managing editor and then publisher of McSweeney’s for eight years. The author of The Silent History, he is also the coauthor of The Clock Without a Face, a treasure-hunt mystery, and Everything You Know Is Pong, an illustrated cultural history of Ping-Pong, and his design work has been honored by I.D., Print, and the American Institute of Graphic Arts. He lives in San Francisco.

City Lights: If you’ve been to City Lights before, what’s your memory of the visit?

Eli Horowitz: There’ve been dozens of visits over the years. On one of my first times there, Pete Maravelis led a group of us through what I remember as a secret door, into what I remember as a hidden cavern, where we stared at Ferlinghetti‘s desk with hushed awe.

CL: If your book had a soundtrack, what would it be?

EH: Enya’s Shepherd Moons, with fart noises sprinkled in at random intervals.

CL: What’s the first book you actually finished reading?

EH: The first I can remember re-reading was The Mysterious Zetabet by Scott Corbett. A kid somehow ends up in a land where everything starts with the letter Z.  Lots of ziggurats.

CL: If you weren’t a writer, what might you do?

EH: Life would probably be pretty much the same, except slightly more time reading NBA news online.

CL: Name a few things you’d require if stranded on a desert island for an undefined period of time (and, yes, no Wi-Fi).

EH: Mostly just peanut butter and apples. Lip balm? Hopefully some kelp would wash ashore and I could weave it into a sort of banjo.


Be here Tuesday, April 21, for Eli Horowitz reading from this book, and be on the look out for other great events on the way this Spring at City Lights including dates with Greg Proops, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Amber Tamblyn, and the one and only Peaches.

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