NATIONAL BESTSELLER • Two sensational unsolved crimes—one in the past, another in the present—are linked by one man’s memory and self-deception in this chilling novel of literary suspense from National Book Award finalist Dan Chaon.

Includes an exclusive conversation between Dan Chaon and Lynda Barry

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
The Wall Street Journal • NPR • The New York Times • Los Angeles Times • The Washington Post • Kirkus Reviews • Publishers Weekly

“We are always telling a story to ourselves, about ourselves.” This is one of the little mantras Dustin Tillman likes to share with his patients, and it’s meant to be reassuring. But what if that story is a lie?

A psychologist in suburban Cleveland, Dustin is drifting through his forties when he hears the news: His adopted brother, Rusty, is being released from prison. Thirty years ago, Rusty received a life sentence for the massacre of Dustin’s parents, aunt, and uncle. The trial came to epitomize the 1980s hysteria over Satanic cults; despite the lack of physical evidence, the jury believed the outlandish accusations Dustin and his cousin made against Rusty. Now, after DNA analysis has overturned the conviction, Dustin braces for a reckoning.

Meanwhile, one of Dustin’s patients has been plying him with stories of the drowning deaths of a string of drunk college boys. At first Dustin dismisses his patient's suggestions that a serial killer is at work as paranoid thinking, but as the two embark on an amateur investigation, Dustin starts to believe that there’s more to the deaths than coincidence. Soon he becomes obsessed, crossing all professional boundaries—and putting his own family in harm’s way.

From one of today’s most renowned practitioners of literary suspense, Ill Will is an intimate thriller about the failures of memory and the perils of self-deception. In Dan Chaon’s nimble, chilling prose, the past looms over the present, turning each into a haunted place.

“In his haunting, strikingly original new novel, [Dan] Chaon takes formidable risks, dismantling his timeline like a film editor.”—The New York Times Book Review

“The scariest novel of the year . . . ingenious . . . Chaon’s novel walks along a garrote stretched taut between Edgar Allan Poe and Alfred Hitchcock.”—The Washington Post
BONUS: This edition contains an Await Your Reply discussion guide.

The lives of three strangers interconnect in unforeseen ways–and with unexpected consequences–in acclaimed author Dan Chaon’s gripping, brilliantly written new novel.

Longing to get on with his life, Miles Cheshire nevertheless can’t stop searching for his troubled twin brother, Hayden, who has been missing for ten years. Hayden has covered his tracks skillfully, moving stealthily from place to place, managing along the way to hold down various jobs and seem, to the people he meets, entirely normal. But some version of the truth is always concealed.

A few days after graduating from high school, Lucy Lattimore sneaks away from the small town of Pompey, Ohio, with her charismatic former history teacher. They arrive in Nebraska, in the middle of nowhere, at a long-deserted motel next to a dried-up reservoir, to figure out the next move on their path to a new life. But soon Lucy begins to feel quietly uneasy.

My whole life is a lie, thinks Ryan Schuyler, who has recently learned some shocking news. In response, he walks off the Northwestern University campus, hops on a bus, and breaks loose from his existence, which suddenly seems abstract and tenuous. Presumed dead, Ryan decides to remake himself–through unconventional and precarious means.

Await Your Reply is a literary masterwork with the momentum of a thriller, an unforgettable novel in which pasts are invented and reinvented and the future is both seductively uncharted and perilously unmoored.
“Eerily beautiful . . . [Chaon] is the modern day John Cheever.”—Boston Sunday Globe
 
“Powerful and disturbing . . . The shocks in this collection are many.”—The Washington Post
 
These haunting, suspenseful stories by acclaimed author Dan Chaon feature scattered families, unfulfilled dreamers, anxious souls—lost, fragile, searching characters who wander between ordinary life and a psychological shadowland. They have experienced intense love or loss, grief or loneliness, displacement or disconnection—and exist in a twilight realm, in a place by the window late at night when the streets are empty and the world appears to be quiet. But it is not, and neither are you. And since you cannot sleep, you stay awake.
 
“Chaon is able to create fully realized characters in mere pages. . . . This collection is further proof that Chaon is one of the best fiction writers working right now.”—Omaha World-Herald
 
“There are not many fiction writers who can do what Dan Chaon can do. . . . [He is] a literary force.”—The Philadelphia Inquirer
 
“Intense and suspenseful . . . a highly recommended work, not to be missed.”—Library Journal (starred review)
 
“Mesmerizing . . . gripping, masterful fiction.”—The Plain Dealer
 
“Superbly disquieting.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
Don’t miss the exclusive conversation between Dan Chaon and Emma Straub at the back of the book.

Look for special features inside. Join the Circle for author chats and more.
Fitting Ends is the first collection of fiction by the acclaimed author of the National Book Award finalist Among the Missing and now appears in this newly revised edition with two never before collected stories.
 
Written before Among the Missing and originally published by Northwestern University Press, Fitting Ends features thirteen stories detailing the almost panicked angst of the American generation now approaching thirty.  Struggling with gaps between youthful expectations and adult experiences, these characters long for understanding and acceptance—but are thwarted by failed love, family disruptions, numbing work, and sexual confusion. 
 
Chaon is one of the most promising new voices in fiction, and this re-issued collection offers further evidence of his unique talent.

“The best of these stories . . . possess a rare, disorienting force. When you look up from them, the quality of light seems a little different. It’s a reminder to those of us who have almost forgotten what literature can sometimes do.”
—Boston Book Review

“The most honest, observant and timely book written this year about the American generation now approaching thirty . . . Chaon speaks with clarity of feeling, and more than a little oddball wit, about the lives of those left behind the demographic curve of America—men and woman with pointless jobs, doughy faces, soured relationships, bad credit. . . . Each story pulls you into its subtle emotional vortex, largely because of Chaon’s knack for simple but poignant detail.”
—New York Newsday

“Remarkable . . . Each story is a marvel of complexity, dense with meaning and nuance. . . . Very few first works are as solid, moving, and pitch-perfect as Chaon’s.”
—The Cleveland Plain Dealer

“[AN] OFTEN PERCEPTIVE, LUCID VOICE.”
—The New York Times Book Review

Two sensational unsolved crimes—one in the past, another in the present—are linked by one man’s memory and self-deception in this chilling novel of literary suspense from National Book Award finalist Dan Chaon.

“We are always telling a story to ourselves, about ourselves.” This is one of the little mantras Dustin Tillman likes to share with his patients, and it’s meant to be reassuring. But what if that story is a lie?

A psychologist in suburban Cleveland, Dustin is drifting through his forties when he hears the news: His adopted brother, Rusty, is being released from prison. Thirty years ago, Rusty received a life sentence for the massacre of Dustin’s parents, aunt, and uncle. The trial came to epitomize the 1980s hysteria over Satanic cults; despite the lack of physical evidence, the jury believed the outlandish accusations Dustin and his cousin made against Rusty. Now, after DNA analysis has overturned the conviction, Dustin braces for a reckoning.

Meanwhile, one of Dustin’s patients has been plying him with stories of the drowning deaths of a string of drunk college boys. At first Dustin dismisses his patient's suggestions that a serial killer is at work as paranoid thinking, but as the two embark on an amateur investigation, Dustin starts to believe that there’s more to the deaths than coincidence. Soon he becomes obsessed, crossing all professional boundaries—and putting his own family in harm’s way.

From one of today’s most renowned practitioners of literary suspense, Ill Will is an intimate thriller about the failures of memory and the perils of self-deception. In Dan Chaon’s nimble, chilling prose, the past looms over the present, turning each into a haunted place.

Cast of Narrators:
Ari Fliakos as the Narrator
Edoardo Ballerini as Dustin
Michael Crouch as Aaron
Alex McKenna as Wave and Kate
Scott Aiello as Rusty

PRAISE FOR DAN CHAON

Among the Missing

“Unforgettable . . . hums with life and wry humor . . . The stories sneak resolutely up on you, like new weather that hits before you know it.”—The New York Times Book Review

“One of those writers who possess an uncanny and seemingly otherwordly understanding of the human condition . . . Chaon [is] a remarkable chronicler of a very American kind of sadness, much in the tradition of Richard Yates, Raymond Carver, and Denis Johnson.”—San Francisco Chronicle

You Remind Me of Me

“Remarkable . . . weaves the threads into a whole that is not only satisfying but devastating.”—Entertainment Weekly (Editor’s Choice)

“Extraordinary . . . renews my faith in the unique capacity of literature to help us understand and ultimately respect ourselves and the strange, baffling, complex figures we all can be.”—Houston Chronicle

Await Your Reply

“Stunning . . . Like the finest of his storytelling heroes, Mr. Chaon manages to bridge the gap between literary and pulp fiction with a clever, insinuating book equally satisfying to fans of either genre.”—The New York Times

Stay Awake

“Eerily beautiful . . . [Chaon] is the modern day John Cheever.”—Boston Sunday Globe
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