The Writer’s Ally has an exciting announcement: our own Harrison Demchick is celebrating the release of his first novel, The Listeners, just out from Bancroft Press this month. It’s a dark and terrifying journey into loneliness, desperation, and the devastating experience of one young boy in a world gone mad. Yet this orphaned 14-year-old finds hope even in the midst of a deadly plague and a precarious gang known as The Listeners.
“The Listeners provides a peep hole to a ravaged world of survivors living day to day with the burden of being human. With stylistic and emotional flourishes largely missing from the post-apocalyptic sub-genre, this is a novel that really shouldn’t be missed!” writes Benjamin Kane Ethridge, Bram Stoker Award Winning author of Black and Orange and Dungeon Brain.
If you think this sounds like a novel about zombies, well, you’re not far off, but don’t expect this book to follow in the footsteps of the latest pop-culture hype. “Demchick’s debut is not a zombie novel, but basically it is,” writes Daniel Kraus of Booklist and author of Bram Stoker Award finalist and Odyssey Award-winning Rotters. “Sicko action is minimal, with Demchick instead following the workaday structure of Colson Whitehead’s Zone One (2011) while also incorporating the kind of primary documents seen in Max Brooks’s World War Z (2006). [With] evocative nonlinear prose . . . Demchick’s depth of focus is both confident and impressive.”
It’s that depth of focus that has readers turning pages with fascination and critics raving about this fresh new take on the zombie threat. “Prick up your ear(s) for a compelling new voice surging over the literary landscape,” writes Ron Cooper, acclaimed author of cult hit Purple Jesus, which was declared a “literary event of the first magnitude” by The Washington Post. “Harrison Demchick has crafted a story of horror and heart, of humanity both abject and noble, of a world relentlessly bleak where a rare drop of hope seeps through the cracks. Get off the main road and read The Listeners.”
We certainly will! We also plan to celebrate Harrison’s awesome achievement at his book release party on December 17 at Ukazoo Books in Towson, MD. If you’re in the Baltimore area, come celebrate with us!
Harrison Demchick came up in the world of small press publishing, working along the way on more than two dozen published novels and memoirs, several of which have been optioned for film. He is an award-winning, twice-optioned screenwriter, and the author of literary horror novel The Listeners. He’s part of The Writer’s Ally team as a developmental editor of fiction and memoir, for which he’s currently accepting new clients.