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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Summer 2019

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    9780385542357 Electronic book text, EPUB 9780525632764 Downloadable audio file, $27 CAD 9780385542340 Hardback, $34.95 CAD
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    Distributor: Random House, Inc. Availability: On Sale Date: Jul 30, 2019 Carton Quantity: 24 $21.95 CAD
    $15.95 USD
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The Shakespeare Requirement
A Novel
By (author): Julie Schumacher
9780525432616 Paperback, Trade English General Trade FICTION / Literary Jul 30, 2019
$21.95 CAD
Active 5.13 x 7.93 x 0.66 in 320 pages Anchor
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune keep hitting beleaguered English professor Jason Fitger right between the eyes in this hilarious and eagerly awaited sequel to the cult classic of anhedonic academe, the Thurber Prize-winning Dear Committee Members. Once more into the breach…

Now is the fall of his discontent, as Jason Fitger, newly appointed chair of the English Department of Payne University, takes arms against a sea of troubles, personal and institutional. His ex-wife is sleeping with the dean who must approve whatever modest initiatives he undertakes. The fearsome department secretary Fran clearly runs the show (when not taking in rescue parrots and dogs) and holds plenty of secrets she’s not sharing. The lavishly funded Economics Department keeps siphoning off English’s meager resources and has taken aim at its remaining office space. And Fitger’s attempt to get a moss-backed and antediluvian Shakespeare scholar to retire backfires spectacularly when the press concludes that the Bard is being kicked to the curricular curb.

IF YOU LOVED DEAR COMMITTEE MEMBERS: The book continues the saga of Jason Fitger and does not disappoint. Dear Committee Members has sold over 70,000 copies to date.

STRONG COMPS: An academic comedy of pitched battles waged for small stakes that will appeal to readers of Jane Smiley’s Moo, Richard Russo’s Straight Man, and David Lodge’s Small World.

COULDN’T BE MORE CURRENT: From trigger warnings to safe spaces to rampant political correctness and identity politics, it’s all grist for Julie Schumacher’s comic mill.

FIRST WOMAN TO WIN THE JAMES THURBER PRIZE: There is no better antidote to the constant drumbeat of depressing than humor, and Schumacher is nothing if not hilarious.

JULIE SCHUMACHER grew up in Wilmington, Delaware and graduated from Oberlin College and Cornell University, where she earned her MFA. Her first novel, The Body Is Water, was published by Soho Press in 1995 and was an ALA Notable Book of the Year and a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award. Her 2014 novel, Dear Committee Members, won the Thurber Prize for American Humor; she is the first woman to have been so honored. She lives in St. Paul and is a faculty member in the Creative Writing Program and the Department of English at the University of Minnesota.

Author Residence: St. Paul, Minnesota

Author Hometown: Wilmington, Delaware

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“Hilarious…. Schumacher’s satisfying and fun novel is bolstered by its memorable campus setting and its quirky cast.”—Publishers Weekly

“A straight narrative delivered with acrid wit…. Fitger is delightfully acerbic and self-destructive in these pages…. Anyone who’s taught will recognize these characters, tightly bound in their arcane knowledge and rancid grievances…. A wry commentary on the plight of the arts in our mercantile era…. Enrollment is now open. Don’t skip this class.”—Ron Charles, The Washington Post

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