… funny, gloomy, terrifying, and joyful … Kennedy’s stories are as good as any I’ve been reading in the past ten years or more. His characters are full, alive, and each story is rich and deep. He writes with wisdom,
and it is perhaps that wisdom which turns some of his
stories of great sorrow into something triumphant.

—Andre Dubus, II, author of In the Bedroom and
We don’t Live Here Any More

Books


Cover photo of Beneath the Neon Egg

Cover photo of Falling Sideways, UK edition

Cover photo of Kerrigan in Copenhagen: A Love Story

Cover photo of Last Night My Bed a Boat of Whiskey Going Down

Cover photo of Getting Lucky: New and Selected Stories, 1982-2012

Cover photo of In the Company of Angels, USA edition

A List of All Books

More than 30 of Kennedy’s books have been published. The majority are listed here, in alphabetical order under several categories.

Fiction: Novels

* Books marked with an asterisk comprise The Copenhagen Quartet.

Fiction: Short Stories

Nonfiction: Essays

Nonfiction: Literary Criticism

Anthologies

In his capacity as Guest Editor, Kennedy has compiled the following anthologies:

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Book Details and Purchase Information

Books are listed below in reverse chronological order by Release Date (i.e., books published most recently appear first).

Book Details may include specifications such as ISBN and name of publisher, a cover photo, blurbs or a brief synopsis, and local links to excerpts, reviews, and video clips for selected books. Hyperlinks to commercial sites that stock Kennedy’s books may also appear for selected books.


Newest Books

Beneath the Neon Egg

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
5 August 2014
Bloomsbury USA
978-1-62040-141-5

“...an author of rare intelligence and moral vision...”

—Alain de Botton, author of 12 books, including The News: A User’s Manual, and How to Think More About Sex
USA edition Cover photo of Beneath the Neon Egg, USA edition

UK edition Cover photo of Beneath the Neon Egg, UK edition

“...[Nordic noir] novel of jazz, violence, sex, death, love, and the underbelly of life, set in the low light of a Copenhagen winter. It is the story of Patrick Bluett, a forty-three-year-old Irish­-American in Denmark, divorced and navigating his relationship with his college-age children, searching for life in a new country. It is also the story of his neighbor, a man in a similar circumstance who becomes his friend—and becomes a Russian prostitute.

“The novel borrows its four-part structure from John Coltrane’s majestic jazz symphony A Love Supreme, which Patrick Bluett listens to as he gazes out the window at the frozen streets of his adopted city, unaware of events in the apartment across the hall, and unaware of the consequences his friend will meet— or will, perhaps, escape.

“The final novel of Thomas E. Kennedy’s acclaimed Copenhagen Quartet— four independent novels about the seasons and souls of Copenhagen—Beneath the Neon Egg cements Kennedy’s reputation as a literary revelation.”

—From the Bloomsbury catalog

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Kerrigan in Copenhagen: A Love Story

Release Date:
Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
June 2013 in USA
July 2013 in UK
Bloomsbury
978-1-40884-194-5
USA edition Cover photo of Kerrigan in Copenhagen, USA edition

UK edition Cover photo of Kerrigan in Copenhagen, UK edition

“Kerrigan is writing a guide book to his adopted city of Copenhagen. Specifically, a guide to the city’s drinking establishments—of which there are more than 1,500. Thus, it is a project potentially without end, and one with a certain amount of numbness built into it, through countless drinks imbibed. And that is part of the point: for Kerrigan, an American expat fleeing a brutal family tragedy, has plenty he wants to numb. The only problem with his project is his research associate, a voluptuous, green-eyed gal who makes him tremble with forgotten desire. Kerrigan in Copenhagen is a love story. It is also a deeply human, Joycean romp through a magical city—its people, history, literature, and culture—giving Copenhagen its literary due and establishing Kennedy as a tremendously gifted novelist.”

—From The Book Depository

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Getting Lucky: New & Selected Stories, 1982-2012

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
17 September 2012
New American Press
978-0-98494-392-0
Cover photo of Getting Lucky: New and Selected Stories, 1982-2012

“...There is so much to like about these beautiful stories, that Mr. Kennedy tells so well, about loneliness, old age, friendship, love, sometimes hope—we only need a whiff of it to survive—in short, about our humanity.”

—From “The Magic of Thomas E. Kennedy,” a five-star review by H. F. Corbin at Amazon.com

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Falling Sideways

Release Date:
Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
March 2011 in USA
November 2011 in UK
Bloomsbury
978-1-60819-081-2
USA edition Cover photo of Falling Sideways, USA edition

UK edition Cover photo of Falling Sideways, UK edition

Falling Sideways is the finest novel I have read in many years. Thomas Kennedy is a true discovery, an author of rare intelligence and moral vision. Not least, the book is immensely compelling and beautifully written.”

—Alain de Botton, author of How Reading Proust Can Change Your Life and many other bestsellers

And from the Bloomsbury catalogue:

“By the author of the acclaimed In the Company of Angels, a rollicking,
cross-generational satire of work, love, and family, grounded in the rubble of a downsizing company.

“There seems to be no shortage of business at the Tank, a high-profile firm in Copenhagen. There are meetings to attend, memos to write, colleagues to undermine. But when the Tank’s nefarious CEO announces a round of downsizing, everyone becomes exponentially more concerned about…whatever it is they’re doing. Not since Joshua Ferris’s Then We Came to the End has there been such a savvy satire of contemporary work culture, and the distorting effects it can have on our lives.

“Following these imperiled company men and women out into the autumn days and nights of Copenhagen, Thomas E. Kennedy traces the ripple effects of the news at the Tank as it impacts spouses, children, and lovers. Top executive Frederick Breathwaite is frantically trying to ensure a stable future for his son, while the boy’s greatest fear is that his future might resemble his father’s absurd present. Harald Jaeger is estranged from his wife and daughters but pursuing desperate passions for other women (including the Tank’s married CFO). And while he’s lost in amorous fantasies, he has managed to catch the CEO’s eye—as a possible replacement for Breathwaite.

“Sharp, funny, but remarkably tender, Falling Sideways is the second book in Kennedy’s virtuoso Copenhagen Quartet, and a book that will continue to build his reputation as one of America’s most versatile literary novelists.”

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The Girl With Red Hair: Musings on a Theme
(anthology co-edited with Walter Cummins)

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
January 2011
Serving House Books
978-1-62040-141-5
Cover photo of The Girl With Red Hair: Musings on a Theme

“Inspired by centuries of red hair lore, but especially the languorous photo on the front cover, nineteen authors created stories, poems, and an essay to reveal the special powers of the world’s redheads, the forces of their hold over the other 98 percent of humanity.”

—Serving House Books

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Last Night My Bed a Boat of Whiskey Going Down

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
April 2010
New American Press
978-0-98178-028-3
Cover photo of Last Night My Bed a Boat of Whiskey Going Down

“Essay writing at its finest...”

—Judges of the National Magazine Award in selecting “I Am Joe’s Prostate” as best essay of 2008

Subtitled A Novel in Essays, [this book] plays with the borders between fiction and essay, story and memoir, narrative and so-called creative nonfiction to arrive at a “novel” about the life of a man and the women he has known: From the first innocence of early teenage romance through an interim period as a cad, an ill-fated marriage or two, to the adventures of an old dude who refuses to go toes up just yet and continues to be “a slave to the nudity of women.” Taking equal inspirations from poetry and women, Kennedy fashions of experience a narrative myth of “all the girls you have ever admired, liked, loved, kissed, longed for and lost but still have now because love is never really lost…

—From the press release by New American Press

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In the Company of Angels

Release Date:
Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
March 2010 in USA
July 2010 in UK
Bloomsbury
978-1-60819-016-4
USA edition Cover photo of In the Company of Angels, USA edition

UK edition Cover photo of In the Company of Angels, UK edition

“Imprisoned for teaching political poetry to his students, Bernardo Greene has been tortured for months by Pinochet’s henchmen when he is visited by two angels, who promise that he will survive to experience beauty and love once again. Months later, at the Torture Rehabilitation Center in Copenhagen, the Chilean exile befriends Michela Ibsen, herself a survivor of domestic abuse. In the long nights of summer, the two of them struggle to heal, to forgive those who have left them damaged, and to trust themselves to love.

“Dense with wisdom and humanity, possessed of a timeless, fable-like quality, In the Company of Angels is the powerful story of two damaged souls trying to find their way from darkness toward light — a riveting testament to the resilience and complexity of the human heart.

“This marks the first large-scale US publication of a major American author whose novels, though internationally renowned, have been treasured literary secrets in his own country until now.”

—From the Bloomsbury catalog

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Riding the Dog: A Look Back at America

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-13:
October 2008
New American Press
978-0-97296-796-9
Cover photo of Riding the Dog: A Look Back at America

This collection comprises a quintet of essays by Kennedy that were originally published in New Letters magazine of the University of Missouri, Kansas City. Three of the essays also received honorable mention in the Pushcart Prize, and one was republished in the anthology, New American Essays.

  • “Riding the Dog,” about a ride through the South on a Greyhound bus
  •  
  • “In the Dark,” an account of being in New York City during the 2003 blackout
  •  
  • “The Bridge Back to Queens,” a description of a visit back to Kennedy’s hometown in Queens
  •  
  • “Land Where My Fathers Wrote,” an essay about writers and bars in New York City
  •  
  • “Life in Another Language,” excerpted elsewhere at this website

Riding the Dog opens with a Foreword by the Editor of New Letters, Robert Stewart, who discusses the craft of the essays and their literary value. The book also includes an Introduction by the author, discussing the pleasures for a fiction writer of taking up creative nonfiction.

This book is also available in specialized audio format for eligible patrons of the National Library Service of the Library of Congress. This work, narrated by Joyce Townsend, has been recorded in the studios of the New Mexico Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, an affiliate of the National Library Service.

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Writers on the Job: Tales of the Nonwriting Life
(with Walter Cummins)

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
July 2008
Hopewell Publications
1-933435-21-6
978-1-93343-521-3
Cover photo of Writers on the Job

What do writers do to eat and live while they write? This collection of essays offers 20 sample solutions.

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Cast Upon the Day

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
August 2007
Hopewell Publications
1-933435-15-1
Cover photo of Cast Upon the Day

This collection includes a story which won first prize in the Gulf Coast competition, and several stories that received other awards, including honorable mention in the Pushcart Prize and Best American Short Stories.

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A Passion in the Desert

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
April 2007
Wordcraft of Oregon
1-877655-52-X
978-1-87765-552-4
Cover photo of A Passion in the Desert

A novel about love and unfaithfulness in its various forms, in which a man’s long-forgotten past circles back to stalk him.

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The Literary Traveler
(with Walter Cummins)

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
2005
Del Sol Press
0-974822-93-0
978-0-974822-93-8
Cover photo of The Literary Traveler

Twenty-four essays which guide the reader through less-traveled paths of the world, following in the footsteps of greater writers before them, from Dublin to Ljubjana, Paris to Prague, Helsinki to Zurich, to the Greek islands and beyond.

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The Copenhagen Quartet

A ten-year project by Kennedy, consisting of four independent novels about the seasons and souls of the Danish capital, each written in a different style, all published by Wynkin de Worde Publishers in Ireland from 2002 through 2005— and released in new editions to a worldwide audience by Bloomsbury USA and UK beginning in 2010.

The novels can be read separately or together, in any particular order.

Two of these novels earned Eric Hoffer Book Awards for 2007:

  • Greene’s Summer: Micro Press Winner
    (new edition, In the Company of Angels, published by Bloomsbury in 2010)
  •  
  • Danish Fall: First Runner-up, General Fiction
    (new edition, Falling Sideways, published by Bloomsbury in 2011)
Logo 2007 Eric Hoffer Book Awards

The four-volume series was also the subject of a DVD documentary film produced by Harper College in 2004 and screened in various universities and art houses in the U.S.

Please be sure to visit The Copenhagen Quartet website for more information.

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Realism & Other Illusions: Essays on the Craft of Fiction

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
2002
Wordcraft of Oregon
1-877655-38-4
Cover photo of Realism & Other Illusions: Essays on the Craft of Fiction

One of ePublisher’s Weekly’s best fifteen nonfiction books of 2002. The author speaks from his heart about the art and the craft and the spirit of learning to become a fiction writer, and getting the stuff published.

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The Secret Life of Writers (with Walter Cummins)

Release Date:
Publisher:
2002
Fairleigh Dickinson University

A special anthology issue of The Literary Review (45:4), with essays by 22 writers about the life behind the writing. Includes essays by Duff Brenna, Janet McDonald, Greg Herriges, David Applefield, Linda Lappin, Susan Schwartz Senstad, and others.

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Poems and Sources

Release Date:
Publisher:
2000
Fairleigh Dickinson University

A special anthology issue of The Literary Review (44:1), with poems by 30 poets, along with essays on how they came to compose the poem in question. Includes poems by John Updike, Charles Simic, Maxine Kumin, Carolyn Kizer, Eavan Boland, Robert Stewart, and others.

Cover photo of Poems and Sources

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Stories and Sources

Release Date:
Publisher:
1998
Fairleigh Dickinson University

A special anthology issue of The Literary Review (42:1), with stories by 13 writers, followed by essays on how they came to write the story that appears in the anthology. Includes stories and essays by Andre Dubus II, Robert Coover, W.D. Wetherell, Susan Dodd, Gladys Swan, Duff Brenna, and others.

Cover photo of Stories and Sources

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Drive, Dive, Dance & Fight

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
1997
BkMk Press, Univ. of Missouri
1-886157-14-6
978-1-88615-714-9
Cover photo of Drive, Dive, Dance & Fight

Eight stories, including an O. Henry Award winner, and several cited for honorable mention in the Pushcart Prize annual.

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Small Gifts of Knowing: New Irish Poetry and Prose

Release Date:
Publisher:
1997
Fairleigh Dickinson University

A special anthology issue of The Literary Review (40:4), with poems and prose by more than 50 contemporary Irish writers, including an interview of J.P. Donleavy by Kennedy, as well as original work by Dermot Bolger, Philip Davison, Tony Curtis, Eamon Grennan, Robert Greacen, Angela Greene, Paula Meehan, Theo Dorgan, and many others. Issue includes a portfolio of black and white Irish portraits by Ron Rosenstock.

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The Book of Angels

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
1997
Wordcraft of Oregon
1-877655-23-6
Cover photo of The Book of Angels

Tale of a magician who seeks to harness the force of an unsuspecting poet’s imagination in order to perform an act of necromancy — on the poet’s own sister.

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A Weather of the Eye

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
1996
Potpourri Publications
1-884754-23-6

A short novel setting out “with heart-rending accuracy” the response of a family whose father is cut down before his time.

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Unreal City

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
1996
Wordcraft of Oregon
1-877655-17-1
Cover photo of Unreal City

Eight surreal stories which appeared in leading North American literary periodicals. One of these stories received a Pushcart Prize, and several others were nominated for prizes.

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New Danish Fiction

Release Date:
Publisher:
1995
Dalkey Archive Press/Center for Book Culture

Anthology issue of The Review of Contemporary Fiction (XV:1), with previously unpublished English translations of work by Suzanne Brøgger, Peter Høeg, Ib Michael, Kirsten Thorup, and others.

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Index to American Short Story Award Collections, 1970-1990

Release Date:
Publisher:
1993
G.K. Hall & Company/Macmillan

Index lists short-story award winners of the Pushcart Prize, American Fiction Series, AWP Short Fiction Award, Drue Heinz Literature Prize, Iowa School of Letters Award, Flannery O’Connor Award, and University of Illinois Short Fiction Series.

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Robert Coover: A Study of the Short Fiction

Release Date:
Publisher:
July 1992
Twayne Publishers

A study of the short fiction of this outstanding and hilariously funny metafictionist. Includes an interview with Coover and selections from other critics.

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The American Short Story Today (with Henrik Specht)

Release Date:
Publisher:
 
1991
United States Information Service/
Danish Association of American Studies

Out of print

A collection of essays and bibliography on the state of the art [as it was] until the date of publication.

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Crossing Borders

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
1990
Watermark Press
0-922820-09-0
978-0-92282-000-92
Cover photo of Crossing Borders

This novel tells the tale of Jack Sugrue, husband and father of two, who loves his family but hates his life, and of what he does to escape.

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Andre Dubus: A Study of the Short Fiction

Release Date:
Publisher:
ISBN-10:
ISBN-13:
October 1988
Twayne Publishers
0-805783-05-9
978-0-80578-305-6
Cover photo of Andre Dubus: A Study of the Short Fiction (Gregor Rare Books)

The first and only book-length study to date of the short fiction of the legendary author, Andre Dubus II. Currently, this book is in the process of being updated and expanded to include a study of Dubus’s essay collections and his one published novel as well. The book includes a lengthy, instructive interview with this modern master.

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