Written by Sheila Heti
Introduction by Ben Lerner
Publication Date August 23, 2014
The A List edition of Ticknor, the first novel by Sheila Heti — featuring a new introduction by Ben Lerner, author of Leaving the Atocha Station.
George Ticknor is trying to reconcile his own failure with the success of his boyhood friend, the famous American historian William Prescott. Ticknor's life has been reduced to a series of awkward meetings, failed dinner parties, and other misfortunes he is loath to own up to. Situated in the complicated and contradictory moments that make friendships both tenuous and difficult to relinquish, Ticknor's fixated thoughts about his and Prescott's dissimilar fates lead him through a litany of rationalizations and recriminations, a psychological maze that is paranoid and harrowing as well as ludicrous and absurd.
In George Ticknor, Sheila Heti has created a memorable new hero of Prufrockian dimension. Ticknor is an exquisite singularity.
Sheila Heti is the acclaimed author of the novel How Should a Person Be?, which was named a New York Times Notable Book, the story collection The Middle Stories, and the novel Ticknor, which was a finalist for the Trillium Book Award. Her writing has appeared in various publications, including the New York Times, London Review of Books, Globe and Mail, n+1, McSweeney's and The Believer. She frequently collaborates with other writers and artists. Sheila Heti lives in Toronto.
Born in Kansas in 1979, BEN LERNER is the author of three books of poetry, The Lichtenberg Figures, Angle of Yaw, and Mean Free Path. He has been a finalist for the National Book Award, a Fulbright Scholar in Spain, and the recipient of a Howard Foundation Fellowship. In 2011 he became the first American to win the Münster State Prize for International Poetry. He teaches in the writing program at Brooklyn College. This is his first novel.