From one of America’s most original voices comes a profound and singular story about a young woman searching for her place in the world.
by Nell Zink
Knopf, June 2022
(via Writers House)
After her mother joins a Buddhist colony and dies, Bran’s southern California upbringing is anything but traditional. Raised by her “common-law-stepfather” on Bourdon Farms—a plant nursery that doubles as a cover for a biker gang—Bran spends her days tending plants, slogging through high school, and imagining what life could be if she were born to a different family. And then she meets Peter—a beautiful, troubled, and charming trainwreck of a college student from the east coast—who launches his teaching career by initiating her into the world of literature and aesthetics. As the two begin a volatile and ostensibly doomed long-distance relationship, she searches for meaning in her own surroundings—attending disastrous dance recitals, house-sitting for strangers, and writing scripts for student films. She knows how to survive, but her happiness depends on learning to call the shots.
Exceedingly rich, brilliantly observed, and delivered with Zink’s masterful humor, AVALON is the irresistible story of one teenager’s reckoning with society at large, and the ways art and desire can clarify all that goes overlooked and cast aside.
Nell Zink grew up in rural Virginia. She has worked in a variety of trades, including masonry and technical writing. In the early 1990s, she edited an indie rock fanzine. Her books include The Wallcreeper, Mislaid, Private Novelist, Nicotine, and Doxology, and her writing has appeared in n+1, Granta, and Harper’s. She lives near Berlin, Germany.
Two generations of an American family come of age—one before 9/11, one after—in this wildly original novel from the “intellectually restless, uniquely funny” (New York Times Book Review) mind of Nell Zink
by Nell Zink
Ecco, Spring/Summer 2019
Pam, Daniel, and Joe might be the worst punk band on the Lower East Side. Struggling to scrape together enough cash and musical talent to make it, they are waylaid by surprising arrivals—a daughter for Pam and Daniel, a solo hit single for Joe. As the ‘90s wane, the three friends share in one another’s successes, working together to elevate Joe’s superstardom and raise baby Flora. On September 11, 2001, the city’s unfathomable devastation coincides with a shattering personal loss for the trio. In the aftermath, Flora comes of age, navigating a charged political landscape and discovering a love of the natural world. Joining the ranks of those fighting for ecological conservation, Flora works to bridge the wide gap between powerful strategists and ordinary Americans, becoming entangled ever more intimately with her fellow activists along the way. And when the country faces an astonishing new threat, Flora’s family will have no choice but to look to the past—both to examine wounds that have never healed, and to rediscover strengths they have long forgotten. At once a biting takedown of today’s political climate and a touching invocation for humanity’s goodness, Doxology offers daring revelations about America’s past and possible future that could only come from Nell Zink, one of the sharpest novelists of our time.
Nell Zink is the critically acclaimed author of “Nicotine”, “Private Novelist”, “Mislaid”, and “he Wallcreeper”. Her writing has appeared in n+1 and Harper’s. She lives in Germany.
The wonderfully talented author of Mislaid returns with a fierce and audaciously funny novel of families-both the ones we’re born into and the ones we create-a story of obsession, idealism, and ownership, centered around a young woman who inherits her bohemian late father’s childhood home
by Nell Zink
Ecco, June 2015
Penny Baker has rebelled against her family her whole life-by being the conventional one. Her mother, Amalia, was a member of a South American tribe called the Kogi; her much older father, Norm, long ago attained cult-like deity status among a certain cohort of aging hippies while operating a psychedelic “healing center.” But all that changes when her father dies, and Penny inherits his childhood home in New Jersey. She goes to investigate the property and finds it not overgrown and abandoned, but rather occupied by a group of friendly anarchist squatters whom she finds unexpectedly charming, and who have renamed the property “Nicotine.” In NICOTINE, Nell Zink exquisitely captures the clash between Baby-Boomer idealism and Millennial pragmatism, between the have-nots and want-mores, in a riotous yet tender novel that brilliantly encapsulates our time.
Nell Zink is the author of the internationally sold “Mislaid” and “Wallcreeper”.