SO MUCH BLUE

Percival Everett

Kevin Pace is working on a painting that he won’t allow anyone to see: not his children, not his best friend Richard, not even his wife, Linda. The painting is a canvas of twelve feet by twenty-one feet (and three inches) that is covered entirely in shades of blue. It may be his masterpiece or it may not; he doesn’t know or more accurately doesn’t care.

What Kevin does care about are the events of the past. Ten years ago he had an affair with a young watercolorist in Paris. Kevin relates this event with a dispassionate air,

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Kevin Pace is working on a painting that he won’t allow anyone to see: not his children, not his best friend Richard, not even his wife, Linda. The painting is a canvas of twelve feet by twenty-one feet (and three inches) that is covered entirely in shades of blue. It may be his masterpiece or it may not; he doesn’t know or more accurately doesn’t care.

What Kevin does care about are the events of the past. Ten years ago he had an affair with a young watercolorist in Paris. Kevin relates this event with a dispassionate air, even a bit of puzzlement. It’s not clear to him why he had the affair, but he can’t let it go. In the more distant past of the late seventies, Kevin and Richard traveled to El Salvador on the verge of war to retrieve Richard’s drug-dealing brother, who had gone missing without explanation. As the events of the past intersect with the present, Kevin struggles to justify the sacrifices he’s made for his art and the secrets he’s kept from his wife.

So Much Blue features Percival Everett at his best, and his deadpan humor and insightful commentary about the artistic life culminate in a brilliantly readable new novel.

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  • Graywolf Press
  • Paperback
  • June 2017
  • 256 Pages
  • 9781555977825

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$16.00

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About Percival Everett

Percival Everett is the author of nearly thirty books, including Percival Everett by Virgil RussellErasure, and I Am Not Sidney Poitier. He has received the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award and the PEN Center USA Award for Fiction. He lives in Los Angeles.

Praise

“By turns funny, shocking and heartbreaking, it’s one of his best books to date. And with a career as distinguished as Everett’s, that’s saying something. . . . It’s not surprising that So Much Blue is such a perfectly structured novel; Everett is an author who started his career off strong and just keeps getting better. It’s a generous, thrilling book by a man who might well be America’s most under-recognized literary master, and readers will be thinking about it long after the last page.”—NPR.org
“Writing in straightforward, seemingly effortless prose, Everett . . . creates suspense by subtly withholding information. . . . Captivating and pleasurable, especially those pages devoted to El Salvador, So Much Blue is a ‘coming of middle-age’ story worth gazing into.”Los Angeles Times
“Three stories, scattered across time, fuse into one stunning tale in Percival Everett’s latest novel. Each individual strand of So Much Blue has a page-turning urgency of its own—but taken together they add up to a masterpiece.”Boston Globe