That Summertime Sound

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ISBN-13: 1000368

by Matthew Specktor

Literature / Music
Hardcover, 5.74 x 8.5 inches, 304 pages
ISBN: 978-1-57687-520-9
by Matthew Specktor Literature / Music Hardcover, 5.74 x 8.5 inches, 304 pages ISBN: 978-1-57687-520-9

“I’m so antisocial, I got a disastrous attitude
(Something something someone—I could never
work this part out) was my kinda dude!
I’m proper primitive, true caveman, Neanderthal!
I’ll scramble your brains for breakfast, leave
paintings on your walls!

I doubted I could’ve said it any better myself, what it was like to be alive and confused, so happy I could kill someone and so angry I could laugh.”

Freshman summer, 1986: You think you’re looking for happiness and you’re in love with the world’s best and most obscure band. Your roommate tells you both reside in Columbus, Ohio. These aren’t the first fantasies you’ve indulged. Blind faith, after all, may be your one true religion. In the thrall of dead philosophers and mad prophets on the radio, you charge off on a group pilgrimage to Anywhere, Everywhere, Nowhere, USA. You still believe in sex, drugs, and rock and roll—but you’re not sure in what order. You’re digging in the crates for that one true thing.

You know something is happening, but you don’t know what it is….

That Summertime Sound is the liner note to that perfect summer single and all its aching echoes, written with the gimlet eye of Jim Thompson, Kazuo Ishiguro’s sense of wonder, and a true believer’s ear for music.

“Matthew Specktor’s That Summertime Sound isn’t so much a book as it is a door, hinged in memory, and swinging wide to every tenderhearted throb of lust and longing and precocious regret still there where you left it, at the periphery of adulthood. How does the novel perform this trick? By prose as lucid and classical as Graham Greene’s in The End of the Affair, yet saturated in detail such that if you’d never had the luck to outgrow an 80s’ teenage dream in Columbus, Ohio, you’ll feel you had after reading it.”
—Jonathan Lethem

Matthew Specktor will receive his MFA from Warren Wilson College in July 2009. He has been a MacDowell Colony Fellow, and his work has appeared in various anthologies. His screen adaptation of Shirley Hazzard’s The Transit of Venus was recently optioned by Warner Independent. He lives in Los Angeles. This is his first novel.