Pre-Order Ships 14 April 2022
DescriptionA rich new novel that explores the true story of A Confederacy Of Dunces and the remarkable life of its author, John Kennedy Toole.
I, John Kennedy Toole is the novelized true story of the funny, tragic, riveting narrative behind the making of an American masterpiece.
The novel traces Toole's life in New Orleans through his adolescence, his stay at Columbia University in New York, his attempts to escape the burden of his demanding mother and his weak father, his retreat into a world of his own creation, and finally the invention of astonishing characters that came to living reality for both readers (and the author himself) in his prize-winning A Confederacy of Dunces .
The other fascinating (and mostly unknown) part of the story is how after a decade of rebuke and dismissal the novel came to a brilliant author, Walker Percy, and a young publisher, Kent Carroll, who separately rescued the book, then published it with verve and devotion.
The novel that almost never came to be went on to win a Pulitzer Prize and continues to sell at a satisfying rate as it winds its way to the 2 million mark. That audience is the happy ending for this brilliant, unrepentant writer, whose only reward before his untimely death was his unending belief in his work and his characters.
"This novel tells the real-life story behind A Confederacy of Dunces, the cult classic that won a Pulitzer after Toole, its author, committed suicide. Carroll has a direct link to the material: He is the publisher who brought Toole's book to light."
- New York Times
"A boisterous fictional take on the life and career of author John Kennedy Toole. This love letter to Toole fans offers plenty of insights into the tragic literary figure."
- Publishers Weekly
"Likable depiction of an ill-fated American master."
- Kirkus Reviews
"The dramatization of publishing-world machinations is as fascinating as Toole's life."
"Every fan of A Confederacy of Dunces has read the Walker Percy foreword. We all thought we knew the story of how John Kennedy Toole's novel found its way into readers' hands after the author's suicide. Boy, did we not know the story. Kent Carroll and Jodee Blanco's brilliant non-fiction novel gives us the goods, and then some. Illuminating and devastating, triumphant and tragic, I, John Kennedy Toole tells the tale of a dream deferred, of genius ignored."
- David Benioff, New York Times bestselling author of City of Thieves and co-creator of HBO's Game of Thrones
14 April 2022
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