Joseph March, a twenty-one-year-old working class kid from Seattle, has just graduated from college and his future beckons, unencumbered, limitless, magnificent. Joe’s life implodes when he starts to suffer the symptoms of bipolar disorder, and, not long after, his mother, Anne-Marie March, beats a stranger to death with a hammer. Joe moves to White Pine, Washington, where Anne-Marie is serving time and his father has set up house. He is followed by Tess Wolff, a fiercely independent woman with whom he is in love. Meanwhile, Joe’s mother is gradually being transformed into a national heroine. Many see her crime as a furious, exasperated act of righteous rebellion. Tess, too, is under her spell. Spurred on by Anne-Marie’s example, she enlists Joe in a secret, violent plan that will forever change their lives.
Maksik sings of modern America’s battered soul and of the lacerating emotions that make us human. Magnetic and masterfully told, Shelter in Place is about the things we are willing to die for, and those we’re willing to kill for.
Alexander Maksik is the author of three novels: YOU DESERVE NOTHING; A MARKER TO MEASURE DRIFT, which was named a New York Times Notable Book and a finalist for both the William Saroyan Prize and Le Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger; and the forthcoming SHELTER IN PLACE, due out in September. A contributing editor at Condé Nast Traveler, his writing has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Best American Nonrequired Reading, Harper’s, Tin House, Harvard Review, The New York Times Book Review, The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, Salon and Narrative Magazine, among other publications. Maksik is the recipient of a 2015 Pushcart Prize, as well as fellowships from the Truman Capote Literary Trust and The Corporation of Yaddo. He is the co-artistic director of the Can Cab Literary Residence in Catalonia, Spain and his work has been translated into more than a dozen languages.