And Other Stories announces today that it will publish Fire Exit (novel), Night of the Living Rez (short stories) and In a Field of Stray Cats (memoir) by Morgan Talty in the UK after it was won in a four-way auction for an unprecedented amount for the press, with Senior Editor Tara Tobler acquiring UK, Europe and Commonwealth (excl Canada) rights for the two fiction titles and UK and Commonwealth (excl Canada) rights for the memoir from Rebecca Friedman Literary Agency via Angelique Tran Van Sang at Felicity Bryan Associates.
Talty’s acclaimed story collection Night of the Living Rez, published in the USA with Tin House Books in 2022 and the winner of the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize for Best First Book, will be published in the UK by And Other Stories in 2025. Talty’s much-awaited debut novel Fire Exit, described by Brandon Taylor as ‘gorgeous. A genuinely original examination of the costs we pay to tell ourselves certain stories about who we are and where we come from’, will be published in September 2024.
About Fire Exit:
A lone white man lives beside the river on the edge of the Penobscot reservation in Maine. Charles spends his days doing odd jobs, looking after his depressive mother, and staring across the water to the house in which his half-Native daughter Elizabeth has grown up, unaware of his existence, her paternity hidden to protect her tribal status. Yet the cracks in the foundations of Elizabeth’s life are beginning to show, and Charles can see Elizabeth is struggling, much like his own mother does. He firmly believes the truth will set them all free – but the price of it may be the destruction of them all. A deeply layered story of family and blood ties, full of quiet, beautiful, and dignified sentences, Fire Exit shows us kinship from all angles, and its capacity to break down, re-form, fade, or strengthen, while always remaining a part of us.
About Night of the Living Rez:
Set in a Native community in Maine, Night of the Living Rez is a riveting debut collection about what it means to be Penobscot in the twenty-first century and what it means to live, to survive, and to persevere after tragedy.
In twelve striking, luminescent stories, author Morgan Talty – with searing humour, abiding compassion, and deep insight – breathes life into tales of family and a community as they struggle with a painful past and an uncertain future. A boy unearths a jar that holds an old curse, which sets into motion his family’s unravelling; a man, while trying to swindle some pot from a dealer, discovers a friend passed out in the woods, his hair frozen into the snow; a grandmother suffering from Alzheimer’s projects the past onto her grandson; and two friends, inspired by Antiques Roadshow, attempt to rob the tribal museum for valuable root clubs.
A collection that examines the consequences and merits of inheritance, Night of the Living Rez is an unforgettable portrayal of an Indigenous community and marks the arrival of a standout talent in contemporary fiction.
About In a Field of Stray Cats:
Against the backdrop of Penobscot culture and history, In a Field of Stray Cats explores the complicated relationships between Talty and his mother, father, and sister. At times outrageous and at times sad, unafraid of the jagged raw edges of his upbringing, this memoir asks what it means to live in a world where the difficult people in our lives are ever present or have moved on, and what it means to love them anyway. Written as he was expecting the birth of his first son, Charlie, Talty reflects on the ways parents do their best to raise us, even while asking how we can try to find a way to do better. This collection examines intergenerational trauma, violence, addiction, classism, joy, love, anger, and grief: at times hilarious and sad, gentle and rough, In a Field of Stray Cats is a searching look at what it means to give love, to triumph over our failures, and to strive to live as best we can.
Morgan Talty on the acquisition:
I’m overjoyed that readers in the UK will be able to read and experience Fire Exit as well as Night of the Living Rez and my memoir. While these books concern Native American Communities, they are much more than that: they are about what it means to be alive, to live, to survive, regardless of who you are. I hope readers enjoy these works and are able to take away what I believe to be an important aspect of all stories, which is ‘how can we do better at caring for others?’
Tara Tobler on the acquisition:
Morgan is a beautiful writer, full of dignified, quiet sentences, wonderfully balanced narrative arcs, intricate layered theming that makes itself gently (never obtrusively) felt, and characters whose fullness is palpable even though they’re often not especially chatty. There’s an incredible strength and clarity of spirit shining through his words, a frank directness, an honesty, a sense of humility and courage, and this is true of the fiction and non-fiction alike. Morgan’s got this capacity to find solid ground amidst uncertainty, to stand there, to take stock, seek truth, to seek a truth inseparable from kindness … to me his writing feels like a way up and out of the worst parts of the moment we’re inhabiting.
Morgan Talty is a citizen of the Penobscot Indian Nation, and the author of the critically acclaimed linked story collection Night of the Living Rez (USA: Tin House Books 2022; UK: And Other Stories 2025), winner of the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize for Best First Book. His writing has appeared in Granta and The Guardian amongst others, and he was selected by Karen Russell as a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree. Talty is an Assistant Professor of English in Creative Writing and Native American and Contemporary Literature at the University of Maine, Orono, and he is on the faculty at the Stonecoast MFA in creative writing as well as the Institute of American Indian Arts. He lives in Levant, Maine.