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by Matthew Specktor
Literature / Music
Hardcover, 5.74 x 8.5 inches, 304 pages
“I’m so antisocial, I got a disastrous attitude
(Something something someone—I could never
work this part out) was my kinda dude!
I’m proper primitive, true caveman, Neanderthal!
I’ll scramble your brains for breakfast, leave
paintings on your walls!
I doubted I could’ve said it any better myself,
what it was like to be alive and confused, so
happy I could kill someone and so angry I
Freshman summer, 1986: You think you’re looking for
happiness and you’re in love with the world’s best and
most obscure band. Your roommate tells you both reside
in Columbus, Ohio. These aren’t the first fantasies you’ve
indulged. Blind faith, after all, may be your one true religion.
In the thrall of dead philosophers and mad prophets on the
radio, you charge off on a group pilgrimage to Anywhere,
Everywhere, Nowhere, USA. You still believe in sex, drugs,
and rock and roll—but you’re not sure in what order. You’re
digging in the crates for that one true thing.
You know something is happening, but you don’t know what
That Summertime Sound is the liner note to that perfect
summer single and all its aching echoes, written with the
gimlet eye of Jim Thompson, Kazuo Ishiguro’s sense of
wonder, and a true believer’s ear for music.
“Matthew Specktor’s That Summertime Sound isn’t so much a
book as it is a door, hinged in memory, and swinging wide to
every tenderhearted throb of lust and longing and precocious
regret still there where you left it, at the periphery of adulthood.
How does the novel perform this trick? By prose as
lucid and classical as Graham Greene’s in The End of the
Affair, yet saturated in detail such that if you’d never had the
luck to outgrow an 80s’ teenage dream in Columbus, Ohio,
you’ll feel you had after reading it.”
Matthew Specktor will receive his MFA from Warren Wilson
College in July 2009. He has been a MacDowell Colony
Fellow, and his work has appeared in various anthologies.
His screen adaptation of Shirley Hazzard’s The Transit of
Venus was recently optioned by Warner Independent. He lives
in Los Angeles. This is his first novel.