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March 2018 Fiction: Literary

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The Gargoyle Hunters
A Novel
By (author): John Freeman Gill
9781101970904 Paperback, Trade English General Trade FICTION / Literary Mar 06, 2018
$22.95 CAD
Active 5.3 x 8.1 x 0.8 in 352 pages Vintage
Booklist Editor's Choice for Young Adults 2017, Winner
A coming-of-age story and a thrilling heist, based on a true story, The Gargoyle Hunters is a funny and poignant love letter to New York City.

At age thirteen, Griffin Watts is recruited to work for his father’s dangerous and possibly-illegal architectural salvage business. Griffin demonstrates a particular skill for stealing expensive gargoyles right off of the buildings whose surfaces they grace. Desperate to bond with his father, Griffin nonetheless begins to fear that his father’s obsession with Beaux Arts architecture might put both of their lives in peril. As his father descends into deranged possessiveness, threatening not only himself but also Griffin’s mother, Griffin must learn to step up and become his own man. The Gargoyle Hunters is a novel of growing up in New York, with a heroic young protagonist in the vein of Augie March and Holden Caulfield.

EARLY HYPE: The Gargoyle Hunters was chosen as a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Pick and was a Booklist Best New Adult Fiction Pick. Early praise has been effusive, from Colum McCann, Annie Proulx, and Gretchen Rubin, among others.

CRITICAL ACCLAIM: In The Washington Post, Ron Charles called it “unabashedly charming” and “coiled with life.”

ALL AGES: This is the story of a young boy’s adolescence, a novel of 1970s New York, and a meditation on architecture and gentrification. The Gargoyle Hunters is a novel that parents who remember New York in the 70s can share with their teenage children.

DEEP RESEARCH: In addition to being a gripping novel, the historical and architectural detail on display—Freeman Gill has written extensively on architecture—is well-researched and educational.

John Freeman Gill is a native New Yorker and longtime New York Times contributor whose work has been anthologized in The New York Times Book of New York and More New York Stories: The Best of the City Section of The New York Times. He is the architecture and real estate editor of Avenue magazine, for which he writes “Edifice Complex,” a monthly column exploring the biographies of historic New York City buildings and their occupants. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, The New York Times Magazine, The New York Observer, the International Herald Tribune, Premiere, The New York Times Book Review, and elsewhere. A summa cum laude graduate of Yale University, where he won two prizes and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, he received an MFA in Writing from Sarah Lawrence College. He lives in New York City with his wife, three children, and a smattering of gargoyles.

Author Residence: New York, New York

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Praise for The Gargoyle Hunters:

“Quirky…. Fun…. Fantastic…. Unabashedly charming…. Coiled with life…. After a few chapters…it’s impossible not to turn your gaze toward the sky.”—Ron Charles, The Washington Post

“Gill, who’s written often on New York’s architectural history, understands buildings from wrought-iron panels to terra cotta sculptures, which makes for some detailed and engaging set pieces, like the pair’s death-defying, dark-of-night effort to remove a gargoyle from the top of the Woolworth Building or Griffin’s exploring the innards of the Statue of Liberty with a romantic interest.”—Kirkus Reviews

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