Craig Suder, third baseman for the Seattle Mariners, is in a terrible slump. He’s batting below .200 at the plate, and even worse in bed with his wife; and he secretly fears he’s inherited his mother’s insanity. Ordered to take a midseason rest, Suder instead takes his record of Charlie Parker’s “Ornithology,” his record player, and his new saxophone and flees, negotiating his way through madcap adventures and flashbacks to childhood (“If you folks believed more strongly in God, maybe you wouldn’t be colored”). Pursued by a raging dope dealer, saddled with a mishandled elephant and an abused little white girl, he manages in the end to fly free, both transcending and inspired by the pull of so much life.
Percival Everett is the author of several novels, including Glyph, Frenzy, and God’s Country; two story collections; and a children’s book. Raised in Columbia, South Carolina, he now lives in Moreno Valley, California. He is Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Southern California and an accomplished painter.
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