The late, great writer David Foster Wallace left a lot of things behind when his life came to an abrupt end two years ago. One of those things is The Pale King, his unfinished novel that Little, Brown has announced it will publish next year. The publishing house also unveiled the book's jacket cover, which was designed by Karen Green, Wallace's widow.
The book will be released on April 15, as is appropriate for a novel about mid-level IRS employees. In a statement reported by the New York Times, the novel's editor Michael Pietsch said:
[Mr. Wallace] takes agonizing daily events like standing in lines, traffic jams, and horrific bus rides — things we all hate — and turns them into moments of laughter and understanding.
Of course, the tedium of those daily events can be mitigated if you have a copy of DFW's Infinite Jest on your person, which you probably do because there's no way you've already finished reading that beast in any sort of meaningful way, lest you have a map of its tortuous story, numerous characters, and countless annotations tattooed onto your brother's back, Prison Break-style.
But back to Pietsch on The Pale King:
Although David did not finish the novel, it is a surprisingly whole and satisfying experience that showcases his extraordinary imaginative talents and his mixing of comedy and deep sadness in scenes from daily life.
Um, yes please. Prepare for a Franzen-like frenzy, but with less haters.