routhwick / Gadsby
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Gadsby: Champion of Youth / Ernest Vincent Wright


Available October 8, 2012 / US$2.00 / Experimental/Literary/Americana




They once said "a child can't do anything." But for once, this dedicated team proved them wrong...


If you could let the children of a drab, dull town help improve it, would you take the risk? John Gadsby, a churchman in his fifties, sets out to do just that. Eventually, his Organization of Youth becomes a force to be reckoned with, and he becomes Mayor of a 60,000-strong city that once boasted 2,000 inhabitants. Soon, though, he learns that running a place of this size has its ups and downs--what with the threat of alcoholism, a typhoid outbreak, and even the First World War. But through it all, he strives to make his domain a rewarding place for his fellow citizens.


Ernest Vincent Wright, a Boston poet and Navy retiree, planted the seeds for what would become Gadsby: Champion of Youth in the early 1930s. By 1937, this 50,000-word novel without the letter "e" stunned the literary world--and much of North America--at large. He would himself call it "The Strangest Story Ever Written"--a fact that has held up in the decades since.


After a two-year delay, Gadsby was published by Wetzel, a vanity press in Los Angleles. From there, the work became a rarity: only 50 copies were sold at the time, and a warehouse fire destroyed the rest of Wetzel's stock. Even the author died on the day of its original printing. Today, copies tend to fetch up to US$4,000.


Now, America's most talked about lipogram returns in the spotlight, as Constitution Books brings back a lost treasure of American literature. This brand-new special edition contains the original text of Wright's manuscript, plus a brand new biographical essay that explores his magnificent feat and beyond--like never before.


Rediscover Branton Hills...

and discover an unsung hero for the ages.



(Exclusively at Amazon's Kindle Store)



(Novel is in the public domain in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia and other countries. Original essay is licensed under CC-BY 3.0 and later.)

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