From the “startlingly talented” (New York Times) author of Everything Matters!—a bold and timely novel about a grieving man dedicated to unmasking the role that lies and delusions play in our reactionary times
"Nobody writing today walks the knife edge of cynicism and sentiment more bravely, intelligently and confidently than Ron Currie. By turns hilarious and heartfelt, The One-Eyed Man is a revelation, a wonder." --Richard Russo
“Dark, tender, and oh-so-timely.” – USA Today
Ron Currie’s three previous works of fiction have dazzled readers and critics alike with their originality, audacity, and psychological insight. A writer of unique vision and huge imagination, Currie excels at creating complex, troubled, yet endearing characters, and his work has won comparison to everyone from Kurt Vonnegut to George Saunders.
K., the narrator of Currie’s new novel, joins the ranks of other great American literary creations who show us something new about ourselves. Like Jack Gladney from White Noise, K. is possessed of a hyper-articulate exasperation with the world, and like Ignatius J. Reilly in A Confederacy of Dunces, he is a doomed truth teller whom everyone misunderstands. After his wife Sarah dies, K.becomes so wedded to the notion of clarity that he infuriates friends and strangers alike. When he intervenes in an armed robbery, K. finds himself both an inadvertent hero and the star of a new reality television program. Together with Claire, a grocery store clerk with a sharp tongue and a yen for celebrity, he travels the country, ruffling feathers and gaining fame at the intersection of American politics and entertainment. But soon he discovers that the world will fight viciously to preserve its delusions about itself.
How Currie's unconventional hero comes to find peace, to reenter the world, and to be touched again by emotion and empathy makes for a dramatic, utterly memorable story.
Since K.'s wife, Sarah, died from cancer, he's found himself "wedded to the notion of clarity," much to the chagrin of his friends. After he prevents a robbery and takes a bullet at a coffee shop, an enigmatic man named Theodore offers him a spot in a reality show, traveling the country and confronting various people about truth. He's accompanied by Claire, a wry former Total Foods employee. To everyone's surprise, the show is a huge hit. Unfortunately, K. has made himself a target, which is great for ratings but not so great for his health. In the third act, K. and Claire are kidnapped in Texas by a gun devotee with an agenda, and in the aftermath, no one will be the same again. Currie is a talented storyteller; K.'s reality show adventures, all told in K's voice, offer sardonic humor and a healthy dose of outrageousness, but the heartbreaking passages on his wife's last days are the real windows into K.'s damaged soul. Currie explores the pain of loss and possibility of redemption with aplomb, humor, and an empathetic hand in this heartbreaking tale.