A debut novel that follows four generations of a Texan family in a changing America.
by Justin Deabler
St. Martin’s Press, February 2021
Julian Warner, a father at last, wrestles with a question his husband posed: what will you tell our son about the people you came from, now that they’re gone? Finding the answers takes Julian back in time to Eisenhower’s immigration border raids, to an epistolary love affair during the Vietnam War, crumbling marriages, queer migrations to Cambridge and New York, up to the disorienting polarization of Obama’s second term. And in these answers lies a hope: that by uncloseting ourselves—as immigrants, smart women, gay people—we find power in empathy. This is a novel that tackles timely issues like immigration and gay adoption. The story moves from a 1950s cattle ranch up to present day Houston and portrays not only a family, but a state, and a country.
Justin Deabler grew up in Houston. He dropped out of high school when he was fifteen, went to Simon’s Rock College, and graduated from Harvard Law School. He is the General Counsel for the Queens Public Library. He lives in Brooklyn with his husband, son, and two cats.