Local Chicago writer Adam Levin’s The Instructions (McSweeneys) begins with a chance encounter with the beautiful Eliza June Watermark and ends four days later with the Events of November 17. This is the story of Gurion Maccabee, age ten: a lover, a fighter, a scholar, and a truly spectacular talker. Ejected from three Jewish day schools for acts of violence and messianic tendencies, Gurion ends up in the Cage, a special lockdown program for the most hopeless cases of Aptakisic Junior High. Separated from his scholarly followers, Gurion becomes a leader of a very different sort, with righteous aims building to a revolution of troubling intensity.
The Instructions is an absolutely singular work of fiction by an important new talent who has already been compared to David Foster Wallace by New York Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times.
Adam Levin’s stories have appeared in Tin House, McSweeney’s, and Esquire. Winner of the 2003 Tin House/ Summer Literary Seminars Fiction Contest and the 2004 Joyce Carol Oates Fiction Prize, Levin holds an MA in Clini-cal Social Work from the University of Chicago and an MFA in Creative Writing from Syracuse University. He lives in Chicago, where he teaches writing at Columbia College and The School of the Art Institute.