Second Skin is John Hawkes’ best book, a magnificent work of the imagination, I recommend it to all who love good writing.
—Bernard Malamud

Second Skin

Fiction by John Hawkes

With a contribution by Jeffrey Eugenides

Skipper, an ex-World War II naval Lieutenant and the narrator of Second Skin, interweaves past and present—what he refers to as his “naked history”—in a series of episodes that tell the story of a volatile life marked by pitiful losses, as well as a more elusive, overwhelming, joy. The past: the suicides of his father, wife and daughter, the murder of his son-in-law, a brutal rape, and subsequent mutiny at sea. The present: caring for his granddaughter on a “northern” island where he works as an artificial inseminator of cows, and attempts to reclaim the innocence with which he faced the tragedies of his earlier life. Combining unflinching descriptions of suffering with his sense of beauty, Hawkes is a master of nimble and sensuous prose who makes the awful and mundane fantastic, and occasionally makes the fantastic surreal.

Editions: PaperbackEbook

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Paperback (published November 1, 2005)

ISBN
9780811216449
Price US
14.95
Price CN
21
Trim Size
5x8
Page Count
240

Ebook (published November 1, 2005)

ISBN
9780811222600
Page Count
240

John Hawkes

20th century American novelist

Second Skin is John Hawkes’ best book, a magnificent work of the imagination, I recommend it to all who love good writing.
—Bernard Malamud
I felt right away, reading the first paragraph of Second Skin, that I was in the presence of the qualities Nabokov considered the hallmarks of art: curiosity, tenderness, kindness, ecstasy.
—Jeffrey Eugenides