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Caveworld: A Novel

Adam Gnade

  • $ 1300

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"Caveworld is weird and funny and melancholy and true in the ways all good books are. With a dizzy-eyed, full-hearted trip from Queens to San Diego to god knows where, Gnade reminds you what it feels like to be alive. For better and worse." - Erik Henrikson, The Portland Mercury

"...this book Caveworld is amazing, it’s kinda like a modern day, punk rock, John Steinbeck East of Eden. Which I love. I highly recommend it." - Nick Buxton

"A milestone. What Kerouac's On the Road must've felt like to people receptive to its message when it was first published, and, odder still, a book that feels long overdue." - Christopher Snyder

Adam Gnade's second novel, Caveworld, is a howl of desperation as its characters fight to find love and meaning in a society with which they feel out of step. Richly encyclopedic and set in the twin border towns of Tijuana and San Diego, the book tells two love stories separated by a gulf of twenty years. Caveworld is made up of the various events (both subtle and seismic) that change lives in an instant. 

Gnade covers a lot of ground: sex and pervasive loneliness in teenage bedrooms, life-shaping horror in the Vietnam jungle, birth, school, work, marriage, depression, crime, murder, mood-flushed road trips crossing the continent, exile (whether on Mexican rooftop or country estate), and living rooms smoky with the sad and oft-times devastating absurdity of "sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll." Equally influenced by Joan Didion's West Coast storytelling, Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County, and James Joyce's early examinations of place, Gnade's Caveworld is an epic, sprawling saga of American life.


338 pages, 5.5" x 8.5", Perfect-bound

Also available as an e-book.

Cover artwork by Joshua Krause.

Recommended for fans of: Roberto Bolaño, Juliet Escoria, Ernest Hemingway, Conor Oberst, Jessie Duke, Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Other titles by Adam Gnade:
Locust House: A Novella
The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Fighting the Big Motherfuckin' Sad
Ringside! A Companion to The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Fighting the Big Motherfuckin' Sad
Simple Steps to a Life Less Shitty

More praise for Caveworld

"Reminiscent of Saul Bellow, Caveworld is a story told with energy and love for the characters and places. Easily his best work yet." - Bart Schaneman, journalist and author of Someplace Else and Transiberian

"I’m pretty sure Adam Gnade is going to write the next Great American Novel, which could make me feel shitty about my own writing - cos I’ve always imagined myself writing a Great American Novel - but the thing about America is that it’s so huge and there are so many different ways of living and telling our lives here that I think there’s plenty of room for more than one Great American Novel. ‘Sides, if I ever succeed at writing one, being on a list with Adam Gnade would be some fine company to be in." - Rust Belt Jessie, author of Reckless Chants

"Here is a work of emotional havoc, horse sense, and deep deferential insight. Gnade's litanies on American life are a sand-shower blasting you clean with their dirt . . . moving through Caveworld you will see your own ghosts and have them exorcised." - Andrew Mears, of the band Pet Moon, formerly of Youthmovies and Foals, author of Kettledrum

"Started reading Adam Gnade’s Caveworld today and 3 pages in, I was hooked. That’s when I know a book is worth my time." - gincoffee.tumblr

"More people should be talking about how good Caveworld by Adam Gnade is." - thomptron.tumblr

"Caveworld is a crawling beast, taking readers from a particular corner of America outwards and beyond borders in the literal, but primarily in the figurative sense... Sections of this book make me remember what it’s like to fall in love in a freewheeling, terrifying way, with a person and with the world and with your own life, even if on the surface it’s not the one you think you should love. This novel made me want to call my friends... I keep a copy of this book in my car because when it comes time for me to run away, or go for a long drive to nowhere in particular I want to make sure I have it with me. When something becomes part of your emergency bag, I don’t know what else you can say about it." - Chris, Good Reads

"Terrific! Gnade's deft handling of states of consciousness, anxiety and concern, pain beyond reckoning, pop-cultural references including the embarrassing and difficult to thread into "serious" fiction, is a wonder to behold and a sight to see. You. Will. Experience. This. Novel. It's one to press onto friends, even if it doesn't taking much "pushing": once you read the four-page prologue, as I did, you'll find it unputdownable. So many times, "stream of consciousness" efforts seem to make a trade off between everyday life and some would-be, aped-Buddhist thought; what do you do, if you're life's full of Slurpees and burritos? Getting this right is something that takes everything to achieve, but it's handed to you here like it's effortless.

A milestone. What Kerouac's On the Road must've felt like to people receptive to its message when it was first published, and, odder still, a book that feels long overdue — which is, itself, part of Gnade's project (hence the straddling of two timelines-flashbacked narrative). Sometimes you gotta do double shifts, for eras not fully lived through: what the early 90s lacked and the early 2000s didn't know it didn't have "sewed up," is the looking-glass you'll be peering through, here.

And it goes on, with more to come! I like it, I like it." - Christopher Snyder, Good Reads