New from FC2, “The Ace of Lightning”

The Ace of Lightning is a series of interconnected stories focused on a turning point in Western history: the assassination in Sarajevo that led to World War I, and the mysterious circumstances that led Gavrilo Princip to shoot and kill the heir apparent to one of Europe’s most powerful empires.

Far from being a conventional work of historical fiction, Stephen-Paul Martin’s collection asks readers to think about what truly constitutes history. What would the past look like if history was written under the influence of Mad Magazine and The Twilight Zone? What happens when the assassination in Sarajevo becomes “the assassination in Sarajevo,” when Gavrilo Princip becomes “Gavrilo Princip,” when the past and the present shape a textual future that looks suspiciously like a past that never was and a present that never is?

Stephen-Paul Martin is editor of Central Park, a journal of the arts and social theory, and author of several collections of fiction, including Changing the Subject, The Possibility of Music, and Instead of Confusion. Martin’s writings have appeared in more than 200 periodicals over the past 30 years, in several different languages. One of his short story collections, The Gothic Twilight, was nominated for the National Critics Circle Fiction Award in 1993.

“Stephen-Paul Martin is a longtime, masterful postmodern storyteller, whose characters’ meditations often blend together with his narrators’ essay-like ruminations in unexpected, comic, recursive, explosive, and subtle ways. Delineating a sinister, deeply absurd world which has both annihilated the capacity for laughter and repeatedly, urgently demands it, The Ace of Lightning takes us inside historical necessity, where time is fluid and Martin’s comic imagination runs wonderfully rampant.”
—Mel Freilicher, author of The Encyclopedia of Rebels and The Unmaking of Americans: 7 Lives

“Welcome to the explosion/implosion of your mind. The world addressed in Stephen-Paul Martin’s fiction blandly offers itself as a seemingly reasonable reflection of our consensual social/identity formation: the news media polluted by babbling celebrity, electronic instantaneity, narcissism, stupefying wealth, crass display; late capitalism gone hog-wild scooping up and rendering (as in a slaughterhouse) the last remnants of Enlightenment humanity; maniacal laughter as the car plunges over the cliff; the shredding of history through time warps and aggressive stupidity. No escape. You are IT! Don’t read this book; it will read you!!! Stay in your hole.”
—Harry Polkinhorn, author of Raven and Analysis

304 pages
ISBN: 978-1-57366-058-7
Paper $19.95

New in Paper! The Eleventh House with an Introduction by Don Noble

The Eleventh House is a remarkable memoir by an influential critic, teacher, world traveler, and raconteur whose sheer exuberance helped to form a network of literary friendships unparalleled in twentieth-century arts and letters. Hudson Strode—writer, gardener, gourmet, and world traveler—proceeds from his childhood home in Alabama to the international literary scene of the 1920s and 1930s, recounting meetings with Eugene O’Neill, H. L. Mencken, Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, H. G. Wells, the Prince of Wales, and the King of Sweden.

Hudson Strode with F. Scott Fitzgerald: His ideal, he said, was to live the life of a hedonist. He argued that pleasure is the sole or chief good in life and that moral duty is fulfilled in the gratification of pleasure-seeking instincts. “We shall get all the joy out of life we can,” he said. “And then when I reach thirty-five I shall do away with myself. There is no sense in growing old.”

Hudson Strode with Ernest Hemingway: I rose to go, wishing him luck on Winner Take Nothing. “What the artist must do,” he said, “is to capture the thing on the printed page so truly that the magnification will endure. That is the difference between journalism and literature. There is really very little literature.”

Hudson Strode with Isak Dinesen: “Whenever I get out of touch with humanity,” she said with a merry look in her eyes, “I get on my bike and ride in the throng …. It makes all men brothers …. There is a kind of snobbish class distinction among motorcars, but with bicycles the model counts for nothing, nor the age, nor even the sex.”

Hudson Strode with H. G. Wells: “Strode,” he said in his squeaky voice, “I may never see you again, but I want you to remember carefully the words I want incised on my tombstone: ‘You damn fools, I told you so!’ And with an exclamation mark, please.”

Hudson Strode
(1892-1976), renowned author of a three-volume biography of Jefferson Davis, also wrote a number of widely acclaimed books on his world travels, among them Sweden: Model for a World, Ultimates in the Far East: Travels in the Orient and India, Timeless Mexico, and The Story of Bermuda. He enjoyed a distinguished career as a professor of English at the University of Alabama, where he made a lasting mark on generations of students and taught many noteworthy young writers who would go on to achieve national acclaim.

336 pages
ISBN: 978-0-8173-5890-7 Paper

New in our Jews and Judaism: History and Culture Series!

Though well known to many scholars and critics in the field of Judaic studies, Hayim Greenberg remains relatively unknown. Since his death in 1953, Greenberg’s contributions to modern Jewish thought have largely fallen from view. In The Essential Hayim Greenberg: Essays and Addresses on Jewish Culture, Socialism, and Zionism, the first collection of Greenberg’s writings since 1968, Mark A. Raider reestablishes Greenberg as a prominent Jewish thinker and Zionist activist who challenged the prevailing orthodoxies of American Jewry and the Zionist movement.

This collection, spanning the 1920s to the early 1950s, includes Greenberg’s meditations on socialism and ethics, profiles of polarizing twentieth-century figures (among them Trotsky, Lenin, and Gandhi), and several essays investigating the compatibility of socialism and communism. Greenberg always circles back, however, to the recurring question of how Jews might situate themselves in modernity, both before and after the Holocaust, and how Labor Zionist ideology might reshape the imbalances of Jewish economic life.

Alongside his role as an American Zionist leader, Greenberg maintained a lifelong commitment to the vitality of the Jewish diaspora. Rather than promoting Jewish autonomy and statehood, he argued for fidelity to the Jewish spirit. This volume not only seeks to restore Greenberg to his previous stature in the field of Judaic studies but also to return a vital and authentic voice, long quieted, to the continuing debate over what it means to be Jewish.

Mark A. Raider is the author or coeditor of numerous books, among them The Emergence of American Zionism, The Plough Woman: Records of the Pioneer Women of Palestine, American Jewish Women and the Zionist Enterprise, and Nahum Goldmann: Statesman without a State.

“Mark A. Raider’s book is a thoughtful collection of Hayim Greenberg’s spiritual and ideological, national and universal worldview as one of the most original Zionist thinkers, who promoted the theory of a balanced double Jewish collective existence as an exile (galut) people, even in free countries, and as a national entity in their historical land, the State of Israel.”
—Yosef Gorny, author of The State of Israel in Jewish Public Thought: The Quest for Collective Identity  

“By framing the life of Hayim Greenberg through a brilliant introduction and then gathering the works of Greenberg together, Mark A. Raider has performed the singular service of bringing one of the most thoughtful and engaged public Jewish intellectuals and Zionist thinkers of the twentieth century back to life. This is a critical volume for anyone interested in modern Jewish and Zionist intellectual history and thought as well as Israel-Diaspora Jewish relations. Scholars and activists alike are indebted to Raider for this book.”
—David Ellenson, author of Jewish Meaning in a World of Choice: Studies in Tradition and Modernity and After Emancipation: Jewish Religious Responses to Modernity

Jews and Judaism: History and Culture
Mark K. Bauman and Adam D. Mendelsohn, series editors

592 pages / 7 B&W figures
ISBN: 978-0-8173-1935-9 Cloth
ISBN: 978-0-8173-9069-3 Ebook