Hauntingly beautiful, pristine language. Lyrical, heartbreaking – a visual experience. This bright, shining gem of a novel will astound you. A lyrical treasure. Wonderful words from a brilliant author. One of my all-time favorites.— Kim
An unforgettable, sensual novel by "one of the most gifted and accomplished poets of his generation" (Mark Rudman).
"Heroism is a secondary virtue," Albert Camus noted, "but friendship is primary." In his gem-like first novel, Forrest Gander writes of friendship, envy, and eros as a harmonic of charged overtones. Set in a rural southern landscape as vivid as its indelible characters, As a Friend tells the story of Les, a gifted man and land surveyor, whose impact on those around him (his friend Clay, his girlfriend Sarah) provokes intense self-examination and an atmosphere of dangerous eroticism. With poetic insight, Gander explores the nature of attraction, betrayal, and loyalty. What he achieves is brilliant in style and powerfully unsettling.
About the Author
Forrest Gander was born in the Mojave Desert and grew up in Virginia. In addition to writing poetry, he has translated works by Coral Bracho, Alfonso D’Aquino, Pura Lopez-Colome, Pablo Neruda, and Jaime Saenz. The recipient of grants from the Library of Congress, the Guggenheim, Howard, Whiting, and United States Artists Foundations, he taught for many years as the AK Seaver Professor of Literary Arts & Comparative Literature at Brown University.
In this strange and beautiful novel as in life, love is part of what is sacred.
— Jeanette Winterson
The clarity of artistic vision, formal innovation, and emotional honesty of As a Friend are enviable.
— J. T. Townley
An adoring friendship turns deadly in poet and translator Gander's visceral if too brief first novel.
Its length is an asset...lending the book the same mercurial qualities as its ostensible subject, the doomed, magnetic Les.
— Joyelle McSweeney