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Napalm in the Heart

Napalm in the Heart

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AVAILABLE AUGUST 13, 2024

By Pol Guasch

Survival is a moral quandary in this jagged, otherworldly debut charting forbidden love during an apocalypse.

 

In a near future devastated by war and unspecified natural disaster, a young man and his mother cling to survival at the edge of a forest. Society is militarized and dangerous, with men with shaved heads patrolling the land as families are uprooted and nature is all but decimated. The young man spends his days helping his mother, who is traumatized from her experience working in the ominous Factory, and exchanging letters with his lover, Boris, who lives in a city on the other side of the forest. It's barely a life, but it's life nonetheless.

 

After a brutal act of desperate violence and the arrival of armed men at their doorstep, the young man leaves his mother and finds Boris, who travels with him through the forest to the city. Escaping slavers and trekking through the empty landscape, the two find moments of intimacy despite their circumstances. But as their survival comes with increasingly violent demands, the young man is forced to confront whether, in his effort to stay alive, he's become the very thing he's fought to escape.

 

An award-winning, breakout novel from a blazingly original Catalonian poet, Pol Guasch's Napalm in the Heart is breathtaking in its beauty and devastation. Sparse, quick, and wrestling with big ideas, from the despoiling of the environment and totalitarianism to queerness and manhood, Guasch's debut is an unrelenting and extraordinarily artful exploration of the moral murkiness of survival.

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