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Cover Art by Kate Morris 

When Walter Ratliff is released from jail in lower Manhattan on the eve of the biggest hurricane to ever make landfall in New York City, he returns to his apartment to find Cordelia, the love of his life, has abandoned him, and returned to their hometown of Acheron, Vermont. Bridges, tunnels, and airports are closed for the storm, but even as the city is inundated, Walter manages to escape with an errant police officer in pursuit of Cordelia, who he is determined to win back at all costs when he reaches Vermont. But back in Acheron, things are not quite so simple; Walter's past doesn't so much come back to haunt him as continue to haunt him in situ, and the looming specter of Henry Hoffmann, local magnate and high school rival, threatens to disrupt not just Walter's tenuous relationship with Cordelia, but his sense of home, family, and stability as well.

About the Author

Josh Amses is the author of the novels Raven or Crow and The Moment Before an Injury. He lives in Vermont.

Author website


“An incredible work of world curiosity and repulsion . . . It is impossible not to regard the world with a rueful but amusing sense of irony after reading this book."

—Joshua Kelly, author: Oh, Your god!: The Evil Idea That Is Religion

"Amses' vividly pronounced portrait of emotional desolation magnifies the human flaws and insecurities we like to pretend don't exist. This protagonist is raw, honest, pitiful, and seriously messed up: an unapologetically self-absorbed wretch trying desperately to get his ineffectual hands on any semblance of beauty, meaning, and love. During This, Our Nadir is an anti-romance: a pathetic quest through ethical degradation to rekindle an impossibly failed love story or at least fabricate a mediocre replacement. Written with honesty, wit, and startling turns of phrase."

—Josh Wagner, author of Shapes the Sunlight Takes

Photo-Carolyn Zuaro