Flatscreen by Adam Wilson

Flatscreen tells the story of Eli Schwartz as he endures the loss of his home, the indifference of his parents, the success of his older brother, and the cruel and frequent dismissal of the opposite sex. He is a loser par excellence—pasty, soft, and high—who struggles to become a new person in a world where nothing is new.

Into this scene of apathy rolls Seymour J. Kahn. Former star of the small screen and current paraplegic sex addict, Kahn has purchased Eli’s old family home. The two begin a dangerous friendship, one that distracts from their circumstances but speeds their descent into utter debasement and, inevitably, YouTube stardom.

By story’s end, through unlikely acts of courage and kindness, roles will be reversed, reputations resurrected, and charges (hopefully) dropped. Adam Wilson writes mischief that moves the heart, and Flatscreen marks the wondrous debut of a truth-telling comic voice.


Visit Adam Wilson's official website, and check out our Twitter discussion with the author from June 19th below! Make sure to follow the Jewish Book Council ( @jewishbook) and search #JBCBooks to follow our next conversation!



@jewishbook: Ready, steady, go! Everyone please welcome @bubblesdepot to Twitter Book Club w/ #jbcbooks!

@jewishbook: Seriously though, @bubblesdepot, story behind your #twitter handle, please? #quickdigression #JBCBooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook My twitter handle is a reference to HBO's The Wire. If you don't get it then you should stop what you're doing... #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook ...and watch the first 4 seasons of The Wire. Don't bother w/ the 5th season. It's a waste of time. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot damn... knew we should have #netflixed that show by now #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot speaking of users and abusers... #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: Has there always been a pudgy Jewish drug addict inside @bubblesdepot waiting to become a book? (aka what inspired FLATSCREEN) #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook Well, I was never very pudgy. But I didn't want to make the character bald like me. So I made him fat instead #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook As for drugs, well, you'll have to roll w/ me on a weekend night and see. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot done and done! the rolling on the town part. not the rolling on drugs. and your inspiration? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook I'm mostly inspired by 80s movies, daytime TV, and internet porn. Plus "books" #jbcbooks

@bookgal102: .@bubblesdepot what sort of feedback have you gotten about eli as a main character? why do readers find him so lovable? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@BookGal102 I'm glad you find Eli so lovable--I do too! Some people (the mean ones on Goodreads) think he's annoying and bratty.

@bubblesdepot: .@BookGal102 But I think he's lovable because he really means well, even if he doesn't know what the fuck he's doing. #jbcbooks

@bookgal102: @bubblesdepot That definitely came across. #JBCBooks

@JSutel: @bubblesdepot @JewishBook with all the recent popularity of The Wire, don't you think ppl are overlooking how monumental The Sopranos were?

@bubblesdepot: .@JSutel .@JewishBook Alton Brown is my main man. Dude knows whassup w/ the mad science. #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@NewDirections When my dad saw my first tattoo, he said, "You can't be buried in a Jewish Cemetery." #jbcbooks

@nycbook: @bubblesdepot @NewDirections Send us a twitpic of your tattoo! #JBCBooks

@bubblesdepot:  .@NewDirections I said, "We'll both be dead, who gives a shit?" He conceded the point. #jbcbooks

@jessapple: @bubblesdepot Current favorite TV show? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@jessapple Louie is the best show currently on TV. No debate. #jbcbooks

@josephwinkler: @bubblesdepot how has fame changed you, and how does it feel to be a bosox fan, right now #JBCbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler If I'm ever famous I'll let you know. Actually, I won't, because I'll be too famous to be your friend. #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler Too depressed to discuss Red Sox. But @parisreview are going to kick @newyorker's ass tonight in media softball. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot any connection between your Kahn and Kleid and Cinquegrani’s Kahn (bit.ly/MDiYFW) or just a coincidence? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook No connection. Actually Kahn is was inspired by the character Einhorn in Saul Bellow's Adventures of Augie March#jbcbooks

@josephwinkler: @bubblesdepot favorite guilty pleasure in reading or authors? #JBCbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler I used to be really into The OC fan fiction. #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@nycbook @NewDirections You can find a pic of it in the book of literary tattoos edited by Justin Taylor and Eva Talmedge #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@NewDirections what tattoo did your father get? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: Sketch of a storm rolling in over a farm house w/ the words "And I'm goin' back out 'fore the rain starts a-fallin" #jbcbooks

@NewDirections: That's awesome! #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot Eli - (stereo)typical of his generation? Is this what you think of the "youth of today?" #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook I don't know much about the youth today. Most of them are probably okay. #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook Or at least no more screwed up than any other generation. #jbcbooks

Bookgal102: .@bubblesdepot are there any contemporary #Jewish writers, writing on Jewish themes, who you particularly admire? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@BookGal102 Sam Lipsyte and Justin Taylor, who are Jewier than you might think. Josh Cohen and Adam Levin, who are super Jewy #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@BookGal102 Does Ben Lerner write about being Jewish? I like him. I like Bezmozgis too. He's a big Jew. #jbcbooks

@naomifirestone: So @bubblesdepot, really, how much did you pay @Shteyngart to blurb this book? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@NaomiFirestone @Shteyngart I paid him in meatballs. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot if we could read minds, would your internal monologue sound anything like FLATSCREEN reads? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook Somewhat, but it would make way less sense, and be way more pornographic. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot is it hard to break out of that voiceover/interior monologue? what about for future works? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook Sort of a relief to break out of Eli's monologue. I can use subjects and contractions in my sentences again! #jbcbooks

@josephwinkler: @bubblesdepot 50 shades of grey, super popular, what would Jewish erotica look like? #JBCbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler I actually thought that book should have been called 50 Shades of Goy #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler Jewish erotica would be the same, but with more oral sex. Duh. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: This happened. RT @bubblesdepot: .@JosephWinkler I actually thought that book should have been called 50 Shades of Goy #jbcbooks

@saralala: .@bubblesdepot What 2 books, 1 movie, 1 recipe and 1 item of clothing would you take on a desert island?

@bubblesdepot: .@saralalala tough question. I'd probably bring a photography book of cats wearing funny hats to desert island. And pajama pants. #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: .@saralalal what a great Q...we're using it again for a future Twitter #bookclub :) #JBCBooks

@jewishbook: .@bubblesdepot, do you think for members of Eli’s generation (jaded/uninterested in the “Judaism of their parents”)... #jbcbooks

@jewishbook: ...there is any form of #Judaism that could work? #jbcbooks

@bubblesdepot: .@JewishBook If there are no more questions I will now make an omelet. #jbcbooks

@jewishbooks: Oh @bubblesdepot I think maybe a question or two of ours got lost in the #twitterverse! Didn't mean to leave you hangin' #jbcbooks

@jewishbooks: Let's wrap it up so you can go make an omelet. Thanks to all who followed @bubblesdepot and #jbcbooks today!!

@jewishbooks: Now, surprise!! We’ve got one more signed copy of FLATSCREEN by @bubblesdepot to give away! RT until tmrw 5PM for a chance to win #jbcbooks