The Purgatory Press & After the End now has a release date: July 26, 2013. Stay posted; Amazon and other retailers may have it in stock well before July.
From the publisher’s blurb:
An outsider artist coats a flat surface with a skin of paint once a day for sixty years, hoping to build a layered edifice that could reach the moon; a photographer travels the world to take smiling self-portraits in front of ghastly scenes of death and destruction; an obscure typist exerts an uncanny influence on generations of famous authors. Like these characters, none of the titles in The Purgatory Press are fit for this world. The press itself is an aborted enterprise, having gone into bankruptcy, leaving behind this wonderful backlist.
Some reviews are already in:
“John Culbert’s double book The Purgatory Press & After the End pulls off a double feat: its ingenuity is matched by an undiminished sense of wonder and a talent for the delicate shaping of enigmas. It is at once deeply knowing and wide open to the unknown. Culbert’s prose moves with unfailing grace from the layered jokes of his “imaginary lives” to the surprises that keep coming “after the end,” which test the powers of fiction to tickle, puzzle, haunt or devastate the reader. This is a book to be relished.” ~ Chris Andrews, translator and poet
“A tour de force & true treat! Come and visit this locus mirabilis where fiction meets thinking, a rarer pleasure than you may surmise. Imagine Borges as a satirist with the Great Library of the Internet at his disposal. Or imagine a Proustian salon that doubles as an all-American saloon where you can meet everybody you ever wanted to. They’re all here — with walk-on parts for Frank Zappa & Jacques Derrida, E.T.A. Hoffmann & Isua Nunaap, fictional authors & real characters! But be careful, reader: don’t do as you imagine the author does, i.e. tuck tongue firmly into cheek — he isn’t, and on this roller coaster ride you’d risk to bite it off, maybe in laughter, maybe in deep thought, as you crash into the next curve.” ~ Pierre Joris, author of A Nomad Poetics
“Sometimes John Culbert’s work sounds like Bolaño, other times it sounds like Lydia Davis, or a demented art historian. He embodies so many voices and styles and finds the virtues in conventions even as he is critical of them. A writer shouldn’t be able to do this many things this well.” ~ Adam Novy, author of The Avian Gospels
Link to publisher’s website