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PATTY YUMI COTTRELL discusses her new book SORRY TO DISRUPT THE PEACE with AMINA CAIN

Sorry to Disrupt the Peace (McSweeney's Books)

Helen Moran is thirty-two years old, single, child-less, college-educated, and partially employed as a guardian of troubled young people in New York. She’s accepting a delivery from IKEA in her shared studio apartment when her uncle calls to break the news: Helen’s adoptive brother is dead.

According to the internet, there are six possible reasons why her brother might have killed himself. But Helen knows better: she knows that six reasons is only shorthand for the abyss. Helen also knows that she alone is qualified to launch a serious investigation into his death, so she purchases a one-way ticket to Milwaukee. There, as she searches her childhood home and attempts to uncover why someone would choose to die, she will face her estranged family, her brother’s few friends, and the overzealous grief counselor, Chad Lambo; she may also discover what it truly means to be alive.

A bleakly comic tour de force that’s by turns poignant, uproariously funny, and viscerally unsettling, this debut novel has shades of Bernhard, Beckett, and Bowles—and it announces the singular voice of Patty Yumi Cottrell.

Paise for Sorry to Disrupt the Peace

“Grief takes an unnerving path through a singular mind in Sorry to Disrupt the Peace. Beckett fans will find a familiar, but Patty Yumi Cottrell’s voice is her very own.”—Amelia Gray

“Patty Yumi Cottrell’s prose does so many of my favorite things—some too subtle to talk about without spoiling, but one thing I have to mention is the way in which her heroine’s investigation of a suicide draws the reader right into the heart of this wonderfully spiky hedgehog of a book and then elbows us yet further along  intowhat is ultimately a tremendously moving act of imagination.”—Helen Oyeyemi, author of What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours

“Patty Yumi Cottrell’s adoption of the rambling and specific absurd will and must delight. This is a graceful claim not just about writing but about a way of being in the world, an always new and necessary way to contend with this garbage that surrounds us, these false portraits of our hearts and minds. This book is not a diversion—it’s a lifeline.”—Jesse Ball, author of How to Set a Fire and Why

“Intelligent and mysterious and funny, Patty Yumi Cottrell’s Sorry to Disrupt the Peace moves so mesmerizingly towards its blazingly good ending. One is tempted to read it as quickly as possible. But really, it is a book that should be read slowly, as some of its deepest pleasures lie in the careful observations, the witty prose, and just the book’s really wonderful gaze on city life, and actually, on all life. This is a stunning debut.”—Rebecca Lee, author of Bobcat

Sorry to Disrupt the Peace had me opening my mouth to laugh only to feel sobs come tumbling out. It’s absurd, feeling so much at once, but it’s a distinctly human absurdity that Patty Yumi Cottrell has masterfully created in this book. In the end I felt ebullient and spent, grateful to be reminded that life is only funny and gorgeous because life is also strange and sad.”—Lindsay Hunter, author of Ugly Girls

“‘Behind every suicide, there is a door.’ So says Helen, aka Sister Reliability, aka ‘spinster from a book,’ who is determined to open the door behind her adoptive brother’s recent death. Her search takes her from a studio apartment in NYC to a childhood home in Milwaukee, and yet thein vestigation is as philosophical as it is practical, as was, perhaps, the death itself. Patty Yumi Cottrell’s Sorry to Disrupt the Peace is a beguiling debut: absurdly funny, surprisingly beautiful, and ultimately sad as fuck.”—Danielle Dutton, author of Margaret the First

“In this completely absorbing novel of devastation and estrangement, Patty Yumi Cottrell introduces herself as a modern Robert Walser. Her voice is unflinching, unforgettable, and animated with a restless sense of humor.”—Catherine Lacey, author of Nobody Is Ever Missing

Patty Yumi Cottrell was born in South Korea and grew up in Chicago, Pittsburgh, and Milwaukee. Her fiction and poetry have appeared in BOMB, Gulf Coast, Black Warrior Review, and other publications. She lives and works in Los Angeles. This is her first novel.

Amina Cain is the author of the short story collection Creature, out with Dorothy, a Publishing Project, and a novel-in-progress, The Energy of Vitória. Her stories and essays have appeared in BOMBn+1The Paris Review Daily, and Full Stop, among other places.

Event date: 
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Sorry to Disrupt the Peace Cover Image
$24.00
ISBN: 9781944211301
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: McSweeney's - March 14th, 2017