Adam McOmber's lush, hallucinatory stories are both familiar and wholly original. Drawn from the historical record, Biblical lore, fairy tales, science fiction, and nightmares, these offbeat and fantastical works explore gender and sexuality in their darkest and most beautiful manifestations. In the tradition of Angela Carter or Kelly Link, My House Gathers Desires is covertly funny and haunting, seeking fresh ways to consider sexual identity and its relation to history.
In "Sodom and Gomorrah," readers encounter a subversive, ecstatic new version of the Old Testament story. In "The Re'em," a medieval monk's search for a mythic beast conjures forbidden desire. And in "Notes on Inversion," the German psychiatrist Kraft-Ebbing receives a surreal retort to his clinical descriptions of same-sex desire.
From "Sodom and Gomorrah":
The strangers then are no longer like two men at all. They have undressed themselves, giving up the pretense of skin and becoming a denser part of the air. We are hungry for them. Ours is a sacred desire that was buried too long in our chests, like some city beneath the sand.
Adam McOmber is the author of The White Forest (Touchstone, 2012) and This New & Poisonous Air (BOA, 2011), from which he had stories nominated for two 2012 Pushcart Prizes. His work has appeared in Conjunctions, Kenyon Review, and Fairy Tale Review. He served as the managing and associate editor of Hotel America at Columbia College Chicago from 2007-2015. He now lives in Los Angeles, CA, where he teaches at Loyola Marymount University.
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About the Author
Adam McOmber is the author of The White Forest (Touchstone, 2012) and This New & Poisonous Air (BOA Editions, 2011). His work has appeared in Conjunctions, Kenyon Review, and Fairy Tale Review. He was the longtime managing and associate editor for the literary magazine Hotel America at Columbia College Chicago before moving to Los Angeles where he now teaches at Loyola Marymount University.
Table of Contents
Sodom and Gomorrah
Poet and Underworld
The Rite of Spring
Sleep and Death
Night is Nearly Done
History of a Saint
Notes on Inversion
What People are Saying About This
The stories in My House Gathers Desires are at once mythic and intimate, erudite and immediately relatable. I'm always impressed and delighted by the capaciousness of Adam McOmber's imagination: how he brings the fine aesthetic attention of the antiquarian to every story he tells, and how he inevitably manages to frighten and satisfy in equal measure. If you believe (as I do) that scary stories are the best stories, then cozy up—you're about to meet your new favorite author. —Camille DeAngelis, author of the Alex Award-winning Bones & All