Big Jack Is Dead by Harvey Smith

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A hellacious father retains his grip on his son's psyche even after death in this darkly brilliant debut novel.


KIRKUS STAR WINNER - Named as one of the best indie novels of 2013 by Kirkus Review. Jack Hickman is an antisocial software exec who designs team-building applications in the late 1990s. Controlled and calculating, his world begins to splinter when he learns - in the middle of a corporate meeting - that his father has committed suicide. Returning home to the Gulf Coast, Jack struggles with a host of unresolved feelings as he buries the man he hated most. Interwoven throughout the novel, chapters set in the 1970s depict Jack as a boy, chronicling his relationships with a storm-tossed mother and a menacing father, living in the shadows of the petrochemical plants scattered along the Gulf Coast. The novel highlights the differences between life in California at the end of the Dot-Com era and life in blue collar Texas during the 1970s, contrasting Jack as a man and as a child, and showing how the people who bring us into the world shape us forever.

About Harvey Smith

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Published March 31, 2013 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. 286 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Reviewed by Various on May 30 2013

A hellacious father retains his grip on his son's psyche even after death in this darkly brilliant debut novel.

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George Royer 1 Aug 2013

This novel is a poignant, haunting, and memorable meditation on fathers and sons set against the backdrop of a decaying industrial town. Highly recommended for fans of the new southern gothic.

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Jim Magill 2 Aug 2013

Stunning debut. Recommended to all fans of Southern Gothic literature and fellow Texans.

Jim Magill

Jim Magill 5 Sep 2013

Added the book to want to read list