Smart, funny, original, The Nix (Knopf, $27.95) by Nathan Hill tells the unlikely story of college professor Samuel Andresen-Anderson and the mother who deserted him when he was a child. An aspiring writer with a book overdue, Samuel needs to get down to work or return his substantial advance—unfortunately, long-since spent. But he succumbs to the lethargy of his stifling job and his distracting addiction to video games. When his mother appears on the nightly news, newly famous for bizarrely attacking a political candidate, Samuel thinks his problems may be solved. He sets out to write her story (a bankable project, his editor agrees) and in the process learns the complicated truth about his mother’s young adulthood and the events leading up to her desertion of her son.
(This book cannot be returned.)