The Book of Otto and Liam (Paperback)

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The Book of Otto and Liam By Paul Griner Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

An intimate, unflinching portrait of the aftermath of a school shooting. Through letters, lists, fragments, and more traditional narrative sections, Otto and others grapple with anger, grief, and the impossible necessity of living in a world that holds such pain. A vital story unfolds with truth and beauty in Griner's hands. 

— From Emma's Picks


Liam is the boy, lying in the hospital, in grave condition, a bullet lodged in his head. Otto is his father, a commercial artist whose marriage has collapsed in the wake of the disaster. Paul Griner's brave novel taps directly into the vein of a uniquely American tragedy: the school shooting. We know these grotesque and sorrowful events too well. Thankfully, the characters in this drama are finely drawn human beings--those who gain our empathy, those who commit the unspeakable acts, and those conspiracy fanatics who launch a concerted campaign to convince the world that the shooting was a hoax. The Book of Otto and Liam is a suspenseful, edge-of-your-seat read and, at the same time, it is a meditation on the forms evil can take, from the irredeemable act of the shooter himself, to the anger and devastation it causes in the victims' families. Griner has managed to make an amazing, incredibly powerful book, one that is like no other.

About the Author

Paul Griner is the author of the novels Collectors, The German Woman, and Second Life, and the story collections Follow Me, (a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers choice) and Hurry Please I Want to Know (winner of the Kentucky Literary Award). He teaches writing and literature at the University of Louisville.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781946448767
ISBN-10: 1946448761
Publisher: Sarabande Books
Publication Date: April 13th, 2021
Pages: 352
Language: English