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Destroy All Monsters: The Last Rock Novel (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Destroy All Monsters is North Carolina author Jeff Jackson's debut with a major publisher (his previous novel Mira Corpora, a Los Angeles Times Book of the Year, was published by indie press Two Dollar Radio). This is a story about an epidemic of concert shootings, the death of rock and roll, small town living and growing up. For fans of: John Darnielle, David Lynch, Rachel Kushner.  

— From Jason's Picks


“At some point, I began to think of it as an ancient folk tale. It’s fine work, with a kind of scattered narrative set within a tight frame. Fast-moving throughout—fragile characters who suggest a bleak inner world made in their own collective image.” —Don DeLillo

An epidemic of violence is sweeping the country: musicians are being murdered onstage in the middle of their sets by members of their audience. Are these random copycat killings, or is something more sinister at work? Has music itself become corrupted in a culture where everything is available, everybody is a "creative," and attention spans have dwindled to nothing?

With its cast of ambitious bands, yearning fans, and enigmatic killers, Destroy All Monsters tells a haunted and romantic story of overdue endings and unlikely beginnings that will resonate with anybody who’s ever loved rock and roll.

Like a classic vinyl single, Destroy All Monsters has two sides, which can be read in either order. At the heart of Side A, “My Dark Ages,” is Xenie, a young woman who is repulsed by the violence of the epidemic but who still finds herself drawn deeper into the mystery. Side B, "Kill City," follows an alternate history, featuring familiar characters in surprising roles, and burrows deeper into the methods and motivations of the murderers.

“Surges with new-century anxiety and paranoia . . . A clear-eyed, stone-cold vision of what’s to come.” —Ben Marcus

“Jeff Jackson is one of contemporary American fiction’s most sterling and gifted new masters. Destroy All Monsters . . . is a wonder to behold.” —Dennis Cooper

About the Author

Jeff Jackson is the author of Mira Corpora, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. His short fiction has appeared in Guernica, Vice, and The Collagist, and five of his plays have been produced by the Obie Award–winning Collapsable Giraffe theater company in New York City.

Praise For…

"[Destroy All Monsters] is a startlingly delightful pop object . . . which diametrically prepares the reader for a novel that is formally complex, experimental, poetic, puzzling, often uncomfortable, at times dizzying, always alive, beautifully written and just plain daring." —Scott Cheshire, Los Angeles Times

"[Jeff] Jackson builds an anxious, deeply felt narrative probing a nationwide epidemic of murders of musicians . . . Infected with this eerie conceit, and expressed through gritty, sharp prose, [Destroy All Monsters] provides both deep character exploration and a nuanced commentary on music, creativity, and violence." —Publishers Weekly

"Destroy All Monsters rails against its own titular notion—it’s better to create than destroy. Its sharded optimism is a balm for these increasingly fractious times." —Michael T. Fournier, The Chicago Review of Books

"Punk rock in literary form, this activism allegory will draw fans of Chuck Palahniuk’s raw social commentary and Charlie Huston’s haunting, macabre symbolism." —Christine Tran, Booklist

"[Destroy All Monsters] is about you and me. It’s about the time we live in, the times our ancestors lived in. It’s about music. It’s about burning your house down. It’s about facing the gun and being behind it . . . a masterful work by someone I’d dare to call one of the greatest living authors." —Kelby Losack, Vol. 1 Brooklyn

Destroy All Monsters is an inventive and powerful book, one of the best (if not the best) rock ’n roll novels I have ever read.” —David Gutowski, Largehearted Boy

"Being an outsider is not the exclusive realm of contrarians, as anyone who has ever longed to be a cool kid can attest. Destroy All Monsters taps into this fundamental aspect of the human experience . . . Jackson paints in sepia tones, his words [creating] a filmy, nicotine-stained haze . . ." —Michael J. Solender, PANK

Product Details
ISBN: 9780374537661
ISBN-10: 0374537666
Publisher: FSG Originals
Publication Date: October 16th, 2018
Pages: 384
Language: English