Ella Minnow Pea is an epistolary novel set in the fictional island of Nollop situated off the coast of South Carolina and home to the inventor of the pangram The Quick Brown Fox Jumps Over The Lazy Dog. Now deceased, the islanders have erected a monument to honor their hero, but one day a tile with the letter z falls from the statue. The leaders interpret the falling tile as a message from beyond the grave and the letter is banned from use. On an island where the residents pride themselves on their love of language, this is seen as a tragedy. They are still reeling from the shock, when another tile falls and then another.... Mark Dunn takes us on a journey against time through the eyes of Ella Minnow Pea and her family as they race to find another phrase containing all the letters of the alphabet to save them from being unable to communicate. Eventually, the only letters remaining are LMNOP, when Ella finally discovers the phrase that will save their language.
From the award-winning and highly acclaimed author of Ella Minnow Pea comes Mark Dunn's most ambitious novel to date. American Decameron tells one hundred stories, each taking place in a different year of the 20th century.
A girl in Galveston is born on the eve of a great storm and the dawn of the 20th century. Survivors of the Lusitania are accidentally reunited in the North Atlantic. A member of the Bonus Army find himself face to face with General MacArthur. A failed writer attempts to end his life on the Golden Gate Bridge until an unexpected heroine comes to his rescue, and on the doorstep of a new millennium, as the clock strikes twelve, the stage is set for a stunning denouement as the American century converges upon itself in a Greenwich nursing home, tying together all of the previous tales and the last one hundred years.
Zany and affecting, deeply moving and wildly hilarious, American Decameron is one America's most powerful voices at the top its game.
We Five tells the story of five young female friends and co-workers through the voices of five different authors, the story unfolding against five distinct historic backdrops. The driving conceit is that an anonymously authored manuscript from the mid-1860s (perhaps the work of Dickens contemporary Elizabeth Gaskell) was discovered and later published. Over the succeeding decades four other authors choose to retell this story in their own time and in their own way. The last author has now gone a step further: she has assembled all five versions into a literary pastiche which cycles chapter-by-chapter through the different versions as the central narrative progresses.
The result is a novel about five young women pursued by five young men of predatory purpose, which takes place alternatively in a small mill town outside of Manchester, England in 1859; in San Francisco on the eve of the 1906 earthquake and fire; in Sinclair Lewis’s fictional Zenith, Winnemac in 1923; in London during the Blitz of autumn, 1940; and in a small town in northern Mississippi in 1997. In the first book “We Five” are seamstresses; in the next they are department store sales clerks; in the next, they sing in the choir of a popular female evangelist; in the next, they work in an ordinance factory outside of London; and in the final version, they are cocktail waitresses in a Mississippi River casino.
The book’s climax is a dramatic collision of all five incarnations of the story: an incident of mass hysteria arising from a solar storm in 1859, the 1906 San Francisco quake, a fire in the evangelist’s newly built “temple” in 1923, the 1940 Balham Underground station bombing and flooding, and a tornado in rural 1997 Mississippi.
John Barron never felt at home in his own skin. Constantly moving from place to place, from job to job, he can never escape the nagging feeling that someone, or something, is coming for him, and that this predatory evil threatens all he holds most dear...
Rose is a creature of the night, a brutal killer with no conscience who is propelled only by the need to survive. But now, suddenly, she sees in her dreams the face of a child, her baby, and her life is thrown into a chaos she never saw coming.
What links these two damaged souls, and what will happen when their paths merge? The Last Night, the second novel from Mark P. Dunn, is a twisting ride through the darkest fears and brightest hopes of the human heart.
"A life by inference is better than no life at all." Dunn pushes his propensity for quirky to the limit, creating a full-length novel entirely upon the margins of a fictitious biography of Jonathan Blashette, a three-legged circus performer-cum entrepreneur and humanitarian. When his editor loses the manuscript of this biography, he offers to publish the only text left: his footnotes. Dunn holds up a funhouse mirror to the pedestaled residents of the twentieth century and has a laugh at the expense of the events and luminaries of an era that perhaps took itself just a little too seriously.
Thirteen-year-old twins Rodney and Wayne McCall and their friend Professor Johnson are the only people in Pitcherville who can see that all the natural laws of the universe have stopped applying to their town. When everyone in Pitcherville wakes up twelve years in the past, baby Rodney and baby Wayne must locate the Professor and find a way to get back to the present.
The first in an exciting new series from the beloved author of "Ella Minnow Pea."