New Press for Andrew Durbin's MacArthur Park

MacArthur Park by Andrew Durbin
New Press for Andrew Durbin's MacArthur Park

Andrew Durbin's debut novel MacArthur Park has received some exciting new press, we've aggregated it here for your convenience. 

"Durbin’s essayistic foraging for a link between high art and lowbrow behavior, the in-crowd and the outcast, pop-cultural glamor and existential angst—all under the lens of sharp social critique—creates what I want to call real-time metafiction, where the narrative unfolds as if it’s being written while it’s being read. And Nick, like Durbin, is self-destructively self-reflective: He analyzes every occasion and interaction to the point of paralysis. Yet he perseveres, despite his neurotic uncertainty about the future, in an arduous pursuit of a plot, which in turn becomes the plot. In one of the book’s breathless climaxes, Nick wonders if he exaggerated, or even fabricated, the opening scene (a cinematic description of watching a gas plant explode in Manhattan during Hurricane Sandy) in order to place himself more fully inside the present."—ZACHARY PACE, Bookforum

"In his first novel MacArthur Park (Nighboat Books), Durbin tells the story of an emerging writer, Nick Fowler, over the course of a few years, making stops at groundbreaking or mundane moments in his Brooklynite protagonist’s foray into self-realization. From the strike of Hurricane Sandy, throughout which Nick stays at his gallerist boss’s Greenwich Village apartment, to a random hookup at a London park, incidents in the character’s quest for a meaning as a writer and a young gay man in New York unfold into a powerful testimony on contemporary queer experience."—OSMAN CAN YEREBAKAN, Lambda Literary

"In MacArthur Park, Durbin observes that “everyone wants to be an artist because everyone wants to speak about the now.” In writing a novel capacious enough to include city life after a storm, travels to art colonies that threaten to turn into cults, nuclear destruction, disorientation amongst the coordinates of modern gay hookup culture, and the obscuring of cultural production and cultural criticism, Durbin proves himself unafraid of writing about the present. The form in which he presents it––as the accrual of a person’s disparate and striking ideas coalescing into a novel, a love story even––makes me think of how Donna Summer sounds when she sings, “I’ll never have that recipe again.” —THORA SIEMSON, Lithub

"The plot of MacArthur Park is never concrete, but the narrator’s globetrotting and interior monologue act as jet-fuel for Durbin’s interest and skill in turning life into art. Durbin is a writer who is adept in dealing with the contemporary exchange between reader and novel, writer and craft. As Nick states, “The issue at hand was my own inarticulate desire to know a place I didn’t live in, the intimacy I wanted to produce out of visiting it, specifically in writing.” MacArthur Park, is an ecstatic debut from a curious writer.... his sublime aspirations for fiction are ones that will be of larger intrigue outside the New York bubble that is probed in this thought-provoking novel."—CHRISTOPHER STEWART, Lambda Literary

"Durbin's characters are archetypal urban millennials. They work coffee-shop jobs while they peddle their chapbooks. They live in Bed-Stuy and call their parents when they can't meet their rent. Terrified of a future that's far from clear, they decide to dance out the storm, to take ecstasy and fuck–to imagine that, for the meantime at least, everything will be OK. Their frustrations extrapolate our collective failure to forecast in an increasingly volatile age, when nature and politics lash out unexpectedly and with extreme violence. The novel's chaotic sense of drift is an honest portrait of a generation loosed from its existential moorings.—EVAN MOFFITT, BOMB

"If a reader wants to know what truly innovative contemporary American fiction looks like, Andrew Durbin's MacArthur Park offers an excellent example. Melding the essayistic and the dramatic with an ironic sheen and narrative depth that impress at every turn, Durbin shows what lies behind the public selves presented by social media, skillfully taking the social and cultural temperature of our time. The psychic devastations unleashed by Hurricane Sandy serve as a starting point for a story that carries the reader along its journey deep into the art world and queer life in the US and abroad." —JOHN KEENE

"Andrew Durbin’s MacArthur Park flows and revels in the contemporary current. It’s wry, dramatic, cool, knowing, funny, sobering, a novel of unsparing consciousness that spars with the news and effects of uncontrollable weather. Durbin registers the temperature of our nights and days, with perfect pitch conversations and commentaries on pop culture, utopian collectives, the art world, politics, sex, emotions. He tracks the wanderings of Nick, his protagonist, who flees Hurricane Sandy; a stormy love affair; a troubled art community, and runs from Tom of Finland phallic fetishism in LA. Everywhere, Nick acutely observes the natural world of startling sunsets and lush landscapes, and always smells the coffee. Andrew Durbin’s first novel is as surprising as it is tender. It’s a beautiful work."—LYNNE TILLMAN

"Andrew Durbin gives us all the information we will need to make it in the precarious margins of the art world: parables of love and drugs, evidence of the impending apocalypse, and play-by-plays of the cocktail and conference banter of the powerful. MacArthur Park is a mirror; it shines—knowingly, darkly—with the indelible indecisions of the early 21st century."

"One of the few younger writers brazen enough to take up Gary Indiana’s velvet-lined gauntlet, Andrew Durbin steals from the master’s toolbox only to construct something entirely his own, personal or, rather, “personal.” Shedding poetry at just the right moment, he understands that the Weather Channel now delivers the news that stays news. The most fraught meteorology occurs when those fronts called the intellect and the heart collide."—BRUCE HAINLEY

"Andrew Durbin is an attentive and astute observer of all things related to climate change, which in MacArthur Park is reimagined as a doomsday phenomenology of Weather—the weather of self, of landscape, of global capital. “My book could be about the weather when you’re hungover. Or when you’re drunk,” his narrator, an aspiring writer named Nick, muses. “I wanted to write about what the weather made people do—and the weather of what people did. Weather as politics. Weather as history.” MacArthur Park, a cultural almanac, crosshatches social and ecological disaster; examines art and art utopias. The novel is a prismatic exegesis on the tenacity and mystery of belief systems in the midst of constant breakage, flux, and storm. In a castaway present, everything is weather and Durbin is measuring the tides."—MASHA TUPITSYN