Alice Knott: A Novel (Hardcover)

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“A strange and beguiling masterpiece.” —Alexandra Kleeman, author of You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine

A hypnotic, wildly inventive novel about art, violence, and endurance

Alice Knott lives alone, a reclusive heiress haunted by memories of her deceased parents and mysterious near-identical brother. Much of her family’s fortune has been spent on a world-class collection of artwork, which she stores in a vault in her lonely, cavernous house. One day, she awakens to find the artwork destroyed, the act of vandalism captured in a viral video that soon triggers a rash of copycat incidents. As more videos follow and the world’s most priceless works of art are destroyed one by one, Alice finds that she has become the chief suspect in an international conspiracy—even as her psyche becomes a shadowed landscape of childhood demons and cognitive disorder.

Unsettling, almost physically immersive, Alice Knott is a virtuoso exploration of the meaning of art and the lasting afterlife of trauma, as well as a deeply humane portrait of a woman whose trials feel both apocalyptic and universal.

About the Author

Blake Butler is the author of acclaimed novels including 300,000,000There Is No Year, and Scorch Atlas, as well as the nonfiction Nothing: A Portrait of Insomnia. His writing has appeared in The New York TimesThe BelieverBookforumBOMB, and elsewhere. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

Praise For…

Advance Praise for Alice Knott:

“Read this beautifully unsettling novel and prepare to be ravished — and ravaged — as it winds its way inside your psyche, snake-like and persistent. . . . Blake Butler's latest is a meditation on trauma and art, creation and destruction. . . . It's a profound, exuberant disturbance, just what you want all art to be.” —Refinery29

“A bold and innovative existential mystery that moves us not towards resolution but deeper into the powerfully strange oceans of fractured memories, damaged love, and lost histories. This book is a thrill, a terror, a heartbreak.” — Laura van den Berg 

“A strange and beguiling masterpiece, an immersive experience of psychic disorder that becomes ever more profound as you read on.” — Alexandra Kleeman

“Devastatingly beautiful . . . . Alice Knott challenges us to remember how we might yet devote ourselves to life—and each other—differently.” —Lidia Yuknavitch

Alice Knott is a thrilling, subversive novel, part fever dream, part high-culture acid trip, part dystopian masterpiece. A dazzling, dangerous book.”  —Christopher Bollen

“Blake Butler is one of our most fearless insurgents against the numbing flow of contemporary life. With Alice Knott he’s created a Lynchian fever dream about the voracious march of capitalism and the vulnerable place of art in our society, with vividly crisp sentences and syntax that could cut diamonds.” —Catherine Lacey

"This book is an incantation—to read it is to be put under its spell. Alice Knott is ferocious, masterful, and truly unforgettable.” —Chelsea Hodson

Praise for Blake Butler:

“A mastermind and visionary.”  —Ben Marcus 

“Our premier literary shaman.” —Alissa Nutting

“[Butler's work is] wild but elegant and smart.” —Roxane Gay

“An endlessly surprising, funny, and subversive writer.” Publishers Weekly

“A powerful force in contemporary literature.” 3AM Magazine

“[An] inventive and deeply promising young author.” —Time Out New York

“Try Blake on. Lace him up. Wear him around your neck in wreaths.” —Vice

Product Details
ISBN: 9780525535218
ISBN-10: 0525535217
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Publication Date: July 7th, 2020
Pages: 320