The Unknown Knowns

A Novel

The Unknown Knowns

Jeffrey Rotter’s "brilliantly comic" debut novel has "earned him every kind of comparison—Kaufmanesque, Vonnegutesque, Pynchonesque" (New Statesman, U.K.).

Jim Rath’s wife has grown tired of his hobbies: his immaculately maintained comics collection, his creepy underwater experiments, and his dreams of building a museum based on the Aquatic Ape Theory of Human Evolution. On the night that she leaves him, Jim thinks he has spotted an emissary from a lost aquatic race called the Nautikons. In truth, the man is a low-level government inspector—a man harboring his own strange fantasies. What follows is a riveting story of two delusional and quixotic men who stalk each other toward a bloody showdown—a spectacularly moronic act at an aging water park. In The Unknown Knowns, Jeffrey Rotter takes everyday domestic fixations and turns them into a stunning portrayal of the human condition.
  • Scribner | 
  • 272 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416587033 | 
  • March 2010
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About the Author

Jeffrey Rotter
Photo Credit: John von Pamer

Jeffrey Rotter

Jeffrey Rotter holds an MFA from Hunter College where he studied under Peter Carey, Colson Whitehead, Colum McCann, and Andrew Sean Greer and was awarded the Hertog fellowship to perform research for Jennifer Egan. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and young son. The Unknown Knowns is his first novel.

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