CULDESAC (Autofocus Books, 2024)
Praise for CULDESAC...
“Exquisite, deadpan comedy. Broken-glass syntax. Anti-recovery anti-memoir. An utterly serious ode to brief, meaningless existence in Plano, TX/on planet Earth. A minor masterpiece.”
—David Shields, author of The Thing About Life Is That One Day You’ll Be Dead
“Mike Nagel’s Culdesac is a compact, heartfelt essay about getting sober, getting older, and finding a place to call home. Interspersing looping, offbeat imagery with black-and-white photographs of the suburban landscape, Nagel admirably explores this challenging terrain with humor and unexpected depth.”
— Amy Fusselman, author of The Means
“Life is a dream: you can’t make this stuff up, and you don’t have to. But you do have to be able to endure it, and be able to mine clarity from its relentless absurdity. That’s what Nagel can do.”
—J. D. Daniels, author of The Correspondence
“Culdesac is a cosmic-poetic exploration of the American suburbs, a profound meditation on the meaning of life while sipping Jamba Juice and assembling IKEA furniture. In a world where too many writers are pushed on us as ‘hilarious,’ Mike Nagel is the real deal. I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say he’s the funniest writer alive. “
— Kevin Maloney, author of The Red-headed Pilgrim
DUPLEX (Autofocus Books, 2022)
Praise for DUPLEX...
"A miraculous combination of comedy and despair . . . I completely loved the book."
— David Shields, author of Reality Hunger
“I loved hanging out in Mike Nagel's Duplex! It was discombobulating in all the best ways. I look forward to seeing what he does next.”
— Amy Fusselman, author of Idiophone
“...a pandemic-era chronicle in which, as things come apart, Nagel does something more important, more impressive and more difficult than making perfect sense: he tells you the truth.”
— J. D. Daniels, author of The Correspondence
“I could write about the wending and winding perfect sentences, the way your brain hypnotically starts thinking a little differently while reading, but instead I just want you to know that I read this book straight through on a cross country flight, letting my body shake a little, chuckling to myself while holding in full-on, out-loud laugher like a dork, a possibly ideal reading experience—in distraction level, activity itself, and the pleasure of starting a perfectly short book in one location and finishing just a few hours later in another.”
—Aaron Burch, founding editor of Hobart, HAD, & WAS Quarterly