A Goddamn Infinite Emergency: Love Stories

The narrator of each love story is not a hero or an antihero, but one of us; flawed, ambivalent, obsessive, trying to make it through the day, through his relations, with some poise. He is poignantly immersed in a pilgrimage not only to come to understand his own nature and the nature of his fixations but the immense, unstable space between, a byzantine riddle. Communion seems impossible; to be struck dumb is often his only response.


Praise for A Goddamn Infinite Emergency

“Being inside John Mandel’s brain is an intoxicating experience, similar to a Dostoyevsky Notes From Underground encounter or something closer to American gothic master, John Hawkes. Mandel’s genius is high satirical narcissism, wounded, giddy, desperately comedic, a man at the end of one’s rope, every sentence pressured, sweated over, pleasurable. Sexual anguish, lusciously rendered: it is fiction as self-induced trauma, and it is beautiful.”

— Benjamin Weissman

“John Mandel’s writing is twisted in the ways that most of us are twisted. It is also brilliant in the ways that most of us are not. A Goddamn Infinite Emergency is a groundbreaking collection of stories, recalling the work of Milan Kundera.”

— Michael Schiffer
Writer of Colors, Lean On Me, and Crimson Tide

"John Mandel tangles the longing for others into a longing for the right word. His stories are told in a vivid first person that oscillates between grand erudition and a madly compressed singularity. LThe intimacy of this voice bristles with intelligence and startling humor as it explores the disorienting complexity of being a person."

— David Humphrey,
Artist & Author Blind Handshake, an anthology of his art writing