About Uncle

About Uncle

A freaky tale of isolation and the porous membranes between us, Rebecca Gisler's slim novel renders a collapsing world with equal parts aversion, fascination, and tenderness--for readers of Ottessa Moshfegh and Sayaka Murata.

At an age when she'd rather be making her own way in the world, an unnamed young woman finds herself moving to a small town at the seaside to care for her uncle. He's a disabled war veteran with questionable habits, prone to drinking, gorging, and hoarding--not to mention the occasional excursion down into the plumbing, where he might disappear for days at a time. When the world starts to shut down, Uncle and his niece become closer than ever. She knows his every move--every bathroom break he takes, every pill he swallows--and finds herself relying more and more on this strange man, her only company in a shrinking world. But then Uncle's health takes a turn for the worse: He's sent to a hospital that cares for cats, dogs, and Uncles, and any way for her to make sense of this eerie new reality, and her place within it, falls apart.

Poet-novelist Rebecca Gisler's debut novel, set against our increasingly disjointed world, welcomes readers into a home of shut-ins as cozy as it is claustrophobic. Gisler's bright, winding prose, masterfully translated from French by Jordan Stump, offers a rare witness to the complex ways in which we order our lives, for better or worse, inside and out.

Publication Date: 
February 20, 2024