Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Ultraluminous

Ultraluminous

A Novel

Katherine Faw

MCD

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Girlfriend. Prostitute. Addict. Terrorist? Who is K?

The daring new novel from Katherine Faw, the brilliant author of Young God, is a scintillating story of money, sex, and power told in Faw’s viciously sharp prose. A high-end, girlfriend-experience prostitute has just returned to her native New York City after more than a decade abroad—in Dubai, with a man she recalls only as the Sheikh—but it’s unclear why exactly she’s come back. Did things go bad for her? Does she have scores to settle?

Regardless, she has quickly made herself at home. She’s set up a rotation of clients—all of them in finance—each of whom has different delusions of how he is important to her. And she’s also met a man whom she doesn’t charge—a damaged former Army Ranger, back from Afghanistan.

Her days are strangely orderly: A repetition of dinners, personal grooming, museum exhibitions, sex, Duane Reades (she likes the sushi), cosmology, sex, gallery shows, nightclubs, heroin, sex, and art films (which she finds soothing). She finds the pattern confirming, but does she really believe it’s sustainable? Or do the barely discernible rifts in her routine suggest that something else is percolating under the surface? Could she have fallen for one of her bankers? Or do those supposed rifts suggest a pattern within the pattern, a larger scheme she’s not showing us, a truth that won’t be revealed until we can see everything?

EXCERPT

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I met a man, when I was a whore in Dubai, who shook my hand and then passed it to his other palm and held it there. At the time it was mildly confusing. Now I know what he was doing. He was trying to see if I was wide-open, if...

Reviews

Praise for Ultraluminous

Praise for Ultraluminous

"Startling, poignant, raw . . . The success of Faw's seismic story lies in a protagonist who, however improbably her life, is dynamic, true, and ultimately her own savior. Daring and original." —Katharine Uhrich, Booklist

"Faw’s second novel (after Young God) pulses with an irresistible voice and the sense of impending catastrophe . . . Faw’s writing is raw . . . an exceptionally clear and memorable prose style." —Publishers Weekly

Praise for Young God

“Badass.” —Vanity Fair

“Addictive.” —Jeva Lange, Vice

“Seductive . . . Reading [Young God] is like having a bottle rocket go off in your hands.” —Lisa Shea, Elle

“A powerful portrait of humanity in the face of everyday atrocity . . . It’s a quick read but likely to leave even the sturdiest stunned.” —Eimear McBride, The Guardian

“Invoking the dysfunctional families and bleak landscapes of Flannery O’Connor, William Faulkner, and Dorothy Allison . . . Young God is boundary-pushing fiction at its best.” —Julie Hakim Azzam, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“Sweet Jesus is Young God terrifying and great. Katherine Faw Morris’s style is singular and ferocious and Nikki is one of the toughest, most electrifying, most unforgettable heroines I have ever encountered on the page. This is a furious blaze of a book that will rough you up and reorder your sense of the world and what’s possible in it. It’s a debut for the ages. Read it.” —Laura van den Berg, author of The Isle of Youth

“Radical, and at times shocking . . . An altogether remarkable debut.” —Peter Carty, Financial Times

“Like a bullet, like a bolt of lightning, like a speeding car, this debut novel goes faster and harder than anything you're likely to read this year.” —Stacey D’Erasmo, author of The Art of Intimacy

“Katherine Faw Morris delivers a brassknuckled gut-punch.” —Alex Houston, Newcity Lit

“Poetic, grim, and beautifully dark . . . Morris writes with splendid economy, chapters short as contes, and plenty of slashing insights on the rough world of throwaway lives and varieties of wrong.” —Daniel Woodrell, author of Winter’s Bone

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Katherine Faw

Katherine Faw’s debut novel, Young God, was long-listed for the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize and named a best book of the year by The Times Literary Supplement, The Houston Chronicle, BuzzFeed, and more. Her second novel is Ultraluminous. Formerly known as Katherine Faw Morris, she was born in North Carolina, and lives in Brooklyn.

Katherine Faw

Katherine Faw Morris

© Don Morris