The Cartoon Life and Loves of a Stupid Man – Hardback

Marc Joan

Deixis Press

Hardback

278pp

ISBN: 9781739708184

Fiction

Publication date: 28 November 2023

Rights: World

£16.99

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FROM THE AUTHOR OF THE CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED HANGDOG SOULS

As an independent comic book store owner and the heir to a pharmaceutical fortune Philippe Favrier lives a life that straddles the real world and the realm of fiction. Struggling with mental illness Philippe relies on his wife Marilyne – a successful surgeon with her own haunting secrets – and a groundbreaking drug his father developed. Bound by their shared pain they navigate their haunted lives forever shadowed by the heart-rending loss of their baby Antoine.

Their fragile world begins to crumble when Philippe catches a disturbing glimpse of an unfamiliar profile in the mirror. And his uneasiness is further fueled by an anonymous comic strip that arrives at his store featuring a character bearing an eerie resemblance to him.

Is Marilyne hiding an affair? Is she connected to the comic strip that’s tormenting him? As he probes deeper Philippe is drawn into a web of deception where the lines between reality and imagination blur – until his investigations into Marilyne and the malicious comic artist at last reveal the tragic truth.

PRAISE FOR MARC JOAN

‘The absorbing winter escape of a read that I had been seeking’

Prashanth Gopalan  Strange Horizons

‘Riddled with mysteries the darkest of human emotions and it is a book that will instigate curiosity yet send a shiver down your spine each moment you turn a page’

India Today

‘I find the astonishing stories collected — and arranged chronologically by historical era — to be consistently enthralling amazing and powerful. They are beautifully written and filled with both sharp characterizations of conflicted complicated people and rich multi-layered detail about the states landscapes history and lingering myths of southern India. . . . I recommend Hangdog Souls heartily to all thoughtful readers who long to be immersed in a fulsomely realized world that skillfully combines very old mythologies and phenomenally new reflections on what they can still mean’

Jerrold E. Hogle Ph.D. Professor Emeritus of English University of Arizona

‘A complex and wildly ambitious novel which makes no apologies for bringing together contrasting genres and influences – from historical fiction to the Gothic from intergenerational family drama to “realist” fiction from supernatural horror to sci-fi all infused with elements of philosophy myth and spiritualism and conveyed in rich and beautiful prose’

Ends of the World

Marc Joan

Marc Joan, a biomedical scientist, is the author of the literary horror epic Hangdog Souls, as well as a number of award-winning and award-nominated short stories published in numerous magazines and journals. Marc was raised in South India, and he now lives in England.