Forthcoming Titles


The Impersonal Adventure
Marcel Béalu

Translated, with an afterword, by George MacLennan

A traveling businessman decides to tarry in an unnamed city, donning a new name and profession on a whim and renting a room in a mediocre hotel on the island lying in the city center, amidst unvisited store fronts and abandoned offices. Béalu’s 1954 novella slowly peels away an oneiric banality to reveal secret drama and doubled lives.

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Vercoquin and the Plankton
Boris Vian
Translated, with an introduction, by Terry Bradford

Boris Vian’s 1947 novel is a delirious satire situated in occupied Paris in which Left-Bank Bobby-Soxers and swing-dancing Zazous cross paths with the standardizing bureaucracy of governmental agencies.

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The Dice Cup
Max Jacob
Translated, with an introduction, by Ian Seed

Max Jacob’s 1917 collection is not just his most famous work, but, alongside Arthur Rimbaud’s Illuminations and Pierre Reverdy’s Prose Poems, the most important collection of prose poems of the twentieth century. Its blend of wordplay, hallucination, humor, chance, daydream, and ironic melancholy is at once indefinable and quintessentially Jacob.

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Joris-Karl Husymans
Translated, with an introduction, by Purdey Lord Kreiden and Michael Thomas Taren

Huysmans’ semi-autobiographical third novel, pubished in French in 1881, tells the tale of the novelist André Jayant and the artist Cyprien Tibaille: two men struggling between the urges of their body and the urges of their soul, and with the failure of matrimony or the artistic endeavor to fulfil the needs of either. Steeped in sardonic pessimism, this ode to sterility was one of the author’s own favorite novels of his career.


The City of Unspeakable Fear
Jean Ray
Translated, with an introduction, by Scott Nicolay

Published only a few months after hiss better-known Malpertuis, The City of Unspeakable Fear is Jean Ray’s only other novel, and one that plays at the margins of the ghost story and the detective novel. A series of inexplicable deaths take place in rapid secession in the improbably serene and imaginary British town of Ingersham...


Marcel Schwob
Translated, with an introduction, by Alex Andriesse

Spicilege collected together Marcel Schwob’s essays and stands today as one of the secret keys to the era of French symbolism, as well as a direct influence on such writers to follow as Alfred Jarry. It includes biographical essays on François Villon and Robert Louis Stevenson as well as inventive ruminations on such themes as perversity, laughter, love, art, and anarchy.

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Small Castles of Bohemia
Gérard de Nerval
Translated, with an introduction, by Napoleon Jeffries

One of Nerval’s last works: an assemblage of memoir, poetry, and theater he himself culled together from the vagabond fragments of his writing in an effort at posterity and mental stability toward the end of his life. Nerval’s “castles” trace out a thread from his early “Odellettes” to his forays into the theater to the hermetic sonnets with which he concluded his oeuvre.


The Voyage of Horace Pirouelle
Philippe Soupault
Translated, with an introduction, by Justin Vicari

Written in 1917, two years before he would co-author The Magnetic Fields with André Breton and inaugurate the Surrealist movement, The Voyage of Horace Pirouelle was inspired by the disappearance of a fellow student and Soupault’s first reading of Lautréamont, and tells the tale of a Liberian who embarks on a journey into Greenland on a whim. A novella-length tribute to wanderlust and the acte gratuit.


The Messengers
Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud
Translated, with an introduction, by Edward Gauvin

In an unnamed country, in an unspecified time, a messenger and his young assistant pursue a dreamlike chain of clues and horror in order to deliver a message sealed in a tube. A Kafkaesque quest told through the lens of Alain-Fournier. One of Chateaureynaud’s earliest works, and winner of the 1974 prix des Nouvelles Littéraires.


New Inventions and Latest Innovations
Gaston de Pawlowski
Translated by Amanda DeMarco, with an introduction by Doug Skinner

A friend to Alfred Jarry, Alphonse Allais, and Guillaume Apollinaire (and a later inspiration to Marcel Duchamp), Gaston de Pawlowski was the France’s Albert Einstein of humor. First published in book form in 1916, New Inventions and Latest Innovations collects in one volume the endless inventions Pawlowski imagined and wrote up for Le Rire rouge, forming a dizzying catalog of absurd imaginary gadgets and “improvements” to everyday life. An early satire on consumer society and the cult of the inventor, the collection would also become a noteworthy precursor to the sort of imaginary science that would influence the Collège de ’Pataphysique.


Tractatus Logico-Suicidalis
On Killing Oneself
Hermann Burger
Translated, with an introduction, by Adrian Nathan West

The Swiss author’s 1988 collection of 1046 aphorisms advocating suicide: the formulation of his “thanatological” philosophy studying the predominance of death over life, published shortly before he would take his own life.

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The Tower of Love
Translated, with an introduction, by Jennifer Higgins

Rachilde’s 1898 novel concerns a young sailor who is appointed as assistant keeper at a lighthouse off the Brittany coast. His complete isolation, shared with a disturbingly strange lighthouse keeper hiding all manner of dark secrets, opens up a nightmarish world of sexual abberation and hallucinatory morbidity.


Stapelia Mixta
Dr. Mises AKA
Gustav Theodor Fechner
Translated, with an introduction, by Erik Butler

While Gustav Theodor Fechner was a professor of natural philosophy and anthropology and is remembered as the godfather of panpsychism and founder of psychophysics who would count William James and Sigmund Freud among his readers, his pseudonymous Dr. Mises engaged in more fantastical and imaginative thought exercises that would instead draw the interest of Alfred Jarry. Stapelia Mixta, first published in German in 1824 and never before translated, offers a series of increasingly inventive essays that start with a relatively disgestible “Encomium of the Belly” and “The World Upside-Down” before developing into a complicated, pre-pataphysical exploration of Spatial Symbolism.


Great Liberty
Julien Gracq
Translated, with an introduction, by George MacLennan

Julien Gracq’s 1946 collection of Surrealist parables and prose poems was primarily composed throughout the dark, war-ridden earlier years of that decade: intensely lyrical evocations of collaged urban exploration, travel, and topography, woven through with evocations of solitude and silence.