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Void Corporation by Blake Butler

 


 

 

 


 

About Void Corporation

Following up the 2023 publication of Blake Butler’s smash hit memoir Molly, Archway Editions is proud to bring you Void Corporation, the revised and definitive paperback of his masterful 2020 novel Alice Knott, now with a new foreword from the author. The perfect introduction to Butler’s hypnotic and wildly inventive fictional world for his many new fans.

From Blake Butler, the genius author of Archway Editions’ smash hit memoir Molly, comes Void Corporation—the crowning achievement of his fictional oeuvre. Initially published as Alice Knott in 2020 by Riverhead Books, it now appears for the first time in paperback with its originally intended title, a brand new foreword by the author, and an unsettling, iconic cover painting by Seymour Rosofsky. The most accomplished and accessible entrypoint into Butler’s hypnotic, hallucinatory aesthetic, Void Corporation is the ideal next purchase for anyone who loved Molly.

Published right as the world changed in early 2020, Butler’s riffs on art, technology, inequality and the conspiratorial impenetrability of our bureaucratic world are more prescient than ever. The recent spate of protest action involving art even seems inspired by the book—people have said as much online—and the resonances keep coming. Reclusive heiress Alice Knott’s self-imposed quarantine is reminiscent of our own, and the mystery deepens after she discovers her family’s world-class artwork collection destroyed and videotaped.

Void Corporation features Butler’s stimulating, immersive linguistic acrobatics, but in following Alice’s journey through a world of memory and conspiracy, he brings a looming clarity. After the artwork is destroyed, copycat incidents proliferate around the world, and she becomes the chief suspect in what may be an international conspiracy. With essential questions raised about the meaning of art and the ramifications of trauma, this definitive edition is a must-have for anyone who has read Molly or wants to discover the exceptional written universe of Blake Butler.

 


 

Praise For Void Corporation

“[Void Corporation] signals Blake Butler as our most imaginative writer.”
—The Believer

“There’s an exceptional amount of intention and control on display in the telling of this story … Don’t expect a conventional reading experience. [Void Corporation] is a meditation on art and perception whose form seems to serve as both a meta-comment on the function of the novel, and a challenge to the expectations that a reader should bring to one. It’s rare for me to enjoy and value a book on those terms, but this one worked for me. And even more to the point, I respected it for insisting that I rise to its challenge.”
—The New York Times Book Review

“Timely and bold … [Butler’s] fiction exhibits an alarmingly masterful grasp of language that effectively haunts readers … The writing is challenging and transgressive, but it is also dripping with perfectly rendered imagery of the macabre …[Void Corporation] uses language to carve through the darkness. Here, like with his earlier work[,] Butler has proven himself to be a cartographer of the psyche. A camera pointed on masked individuals drenching a painting with kerosene before setting a match to it; the modern American home, idyllic and clandestine on its exterior while inside, familiar spaces like bedrooms become war zones, morphing and shifting like a body flexing and contorting: These are the sorts of images that Butler leaves behind in your mind, never to be erased.”
—The New York Observer

”[A] tangle of cosmic pandemonium … For all its sleek neo-Gothicism and terrifying speculation on and remote past and near future of the human mind, [Void Corporation] carries within it the old-style haunting and paranormal shenanigans of a Poe-like captivity tale.”
—The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“A remarkable accomplishment … [Butler’s] constant worrying at what’s genuinely personal, struggling to detach it from the endless play of light across wall and screen, strikes me as an undeniably contemporary project.”
—John Domini, Los Angeles Review of Books

“Read this beautifully unsettling novel and prepare to be ravished—and ravaged—as it winds its way inside your psyche, snake-like and persistent … Blake Butler’s latest is a meditation on trauma and art, creation and destruction … It’s a profound, exuberant disturbance, just what you want all art to be.”
—Refinery29

“Stunning and impressive … With the novel’s humor, arresting voice, and pastiche of conspiracy, art, and paranoia, Butler brings to mind the work of Pynchon and DeLillo as he explores the complexity of artistic achievement and the unreliability of our own minds.”
—ZYZZYVA

“A masterpiece … I keep trying to come up with my favorite bits in the book … the precision of descriptions … the grainy-video feel of the atmosphere .. the way it feels like you might be losing your mind when you read it, the small bits of emotion and feeling that made me feel deeply sad, the hauntology of the whole thing, or maybe the end, where I said out loud ‘don’t do it’ and then he did it. I loved it all.”
—World Literature Today

“Butler is a master of the American dystopic, language-driven novel, and here returns with his penchant for mining the unsettling national psyche, delving so deeply into its unconscious that the resulting delirium is uncannily close to truth.”
—The Millions

“Heartbreaking and heady … [Butler’s] manipulation of language is a thing of wonder, and the emotions it inspires are more akin to what a person feels while listening to an intricate piece of music as opposed to reading a book.”
—LitReactor

“A bold and innovative existential mystery that moves us not towards resolution but deeper into the powerfully strange oceans of fractured memories, damaged love, and lost histories. This book is a thrill, a terror, a heartbreak.”
—Laura van den Berg

“A strange and beguiling masterpiece, an immersive experience of psychic disorder that becomes ever more profound as you read on.”
—Alexandra Kleeman

“A beautifully constructed maze full of trick mirrors that reminds us of how we find ways to exist inside our realities even as they change.”
—Ilana Masad

“Devastatingly beautiful … [Void Corporation] challenges us to remember how we might yet devote ourselves to life—and each other—differently.”
—Lidia Yuknavitch

“[Void Corporation] is a thrilling, subversive novel, part fever dream, part high-culture acid trip, part dystopian masterpiece. A dazzling, dangerous book.”
—Christopher Bollen

“Blake Butler is one of our most fearless insurgents against the numbing flow of contemporary life. With [Void Corporation] he’s created a Lynchian fever dream about the voracious march of capitalism and the vulnerable place of art in our society, with vividly crisp sentences and syntax that could cut diamonds.”
—Catherine Lacey

“This book is an incantation—to read it is to be put under its spell. [Void Corporation] is ferocious, masterful, and truly unforgettable.”
—Chelsea Hodson

 


 

About Blake Butler

BLAKE BUTLER is the author of ten book-length works, most recently the bestselling memoir Molly from Archway Editions. His short fiction, interviews, reviews, and essays have appeared widely, including in The Believer, The New York Times, BOMB, Bookforum, and as an ongoing column at Vice. He recently began blogging on Substack at Dividual.