The Southern Bookseller Review Newsletter

  • Spotlight on: Big Swiss by Jen Beagin
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    Jen Beagin, photo credit Franco Vogt

    I’d never done manual labor before, and I remember my hands aching in the middle of the night. I was also useless without sugar, caffeine, and nicotine. I needed all three, all the time. The women I worked with ate apples for breakfast. Apples. It was baffling. They were always offering me fruit, and I was like, Get away from me with your disgusting bananas. They drank tea and didn’t smoke. They swept mindfully. They appreciated the meditative aspects of cleaning. They could clean three houses and still go to the gym and out to dinner. I showed up with donuts, and then ate all the donuts.” ―Jen Beagin, Interview, Bloom

     

    Big Swiss by Jen Beagin

    What booksellers are saying about Big Swiss

    • Big Swiss is the sort of strange and beautiful novel that you have to read to believe. It’s utterly shocking, absolutely hysterical, and beautifully cynical. Honestly, it was unlike anything else I’ve ever read. I laughed out loud on every other page, rolled my eyes at the pervasive hipster things Big Swiss pokes fun at, and thoroughly enjoyed the quirky atmosphere. However funny and entertaining, though, know that Big Swiss is also an intimate and often disturbing portrait of mental illness, infidelity, and trauma. It’s a close encounter with human damage and nothing is off limits.
        ―Emily Lessig from The Violet Fox Bookshop in Virginia Beach, VA | Buy from The Violet Fox

    • I knew this book was going to be for me when the blub said it was for fans of Killing Eve and it really didn’t disappoint! The feeling of slowly watching a train wreck happen was prevalent as Greta made the absolute worst decisions she could, but that’s what made this enjoyable. Greta is super flawed and unreliable but that’s what it makes her feel so human.
        ―Ndobe Foletia from Epilogue Books Chocolate Brews in Chapel Hill, NC | Buy from Epilogue Books

    • JBrilliant, acerbic, and vulnerable in its hilarity, this bonkers narrative is unlike anything I’ve ever read. Greta is obsessed with Big Swiss, Big Swiss is obsessed with Greta. They probably hate each other, they probably hate parts of themselves that the other adores. It’s all so ridiculous and sexy. There’s immense violence and sadness, but so many off kilter details that make you feel like all of its real and nothing is real at the same time. Which makes it the perfect book. It’s like a reality built on fantasy but the foundations are wearing thin so you can see all the swirling and neon madness underneath.
        ―Jessica Nock from Main Street Books in Davidson, NC | Buy from Main Street Books

    • One might call her an eavesdropper, but that wouldn’t entirely be accurate as Greta is actually being paid to transcribe the sex therapy sessions she is listening to. After devouring this clever, darkly hilarious romp, you’ll feel a bit of a voyeur yourself, but boy, will you be glad you peeked between the covers of this gem.
        ―Angie Tally from The Country Bookshop in Southern Pines, NC | Buy from The Country Bookshop

    About Jen Beagin

    Jen Beagin holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of California, Irvine, and is a recipient of a Whiting Award in fiction. Her first novel Pretend I’m Dead was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize and Vacuum in the Dark was shortlisted for the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for comic fiction. She is also the author of Big Swiss. She lives in Hudson, New York.

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