Grace Han on Designing Brandon Taylor's Real Life
I’m always excited to read the work of Riverhead’s debut authors, and this was no exception. Brandon Taylor’s voice is smart and electric and I am truly enamored by his ability to navigate us through a range of emotions in such an elegant, profound way.
Real Life is about Wallace, an introverted grad student who is at odds with the Midwestern university town where he is working toward a biochem degree. After the social intricacies of a late-summer weekend, he is forced to face his private wounds. For Wallace, real life unravels in a place where he is studying the complexities of biological life. What is striking to me is that there are raw and violent emotions being brought to the surface in this seemingly controlled, academic, backdrop.