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Release date: March 16, 2015
Genres: Crime, Literary
120 pages
ISBN: 978-1940885155

Somewhere between where men and women seek red-eyed revenge and rolls in the hay lay the characters in Leverage, from the farm roads of mid-60’s Texas to contemporary suburban New Jersey. As each of them wander in the pursuit of happiness and peace of mind, the American dream is made lucid at a fever pitch where schlub is king and the sun shines on a dog’s ass from dusk until dawn.

“Eric Nelson’s collection, Leverage, left me with one of my favorite feelings: that of looking into the window of a stranger’s home and seeing something immediately recognizable, and feeling less alone because of it.”
—Lindsay Hunter, author of UGLY GIRLS

“[Eric Nelson] can write the type of dialogue that you don’t see anymore. It zips and zaps and comes out the other end until you just end up dizzy and smelling like urine and the interior of a Chevrolet Pinto.”
—Scott McClanahan, author of CRAPALACHIA and HILL WILLIAM

“At some early point in each of Leverage’s seven stories, something clicks, and you’re pulled into these small-scale worlds—young toughs looking for action in the streets of Camden; hillbilly drama at a toddler’s birthday party; a widower’s salvation that takes the form of a dog fight in 1960s Texas. Eric Nelson’s crafted tales are populated with characters with nothing to lose, looking to get theirs, often headed into ridiculous and tragic catastrophe. Nelson’s tough and nervy prose brings forth characters often found in mug shots or trashy daytime talk shows; except each one is strung through with painful loss, each one with a sad human heart.”
—Dan Magers, author of PARTYKNIFE

“Eric Nelson’s stories hurt, alarm, and occasionally soothe, but just enough to get your guard down before the next punch lands. Nelson expertly renders the violence and misery and strange joys of hapless lovers and loners, doing their best, which as any human with a heart knows, is rarely enough.”
—Paula Bomer, author of INSIDE MADELEINE and NINE MONTHS

“These stories, about working class anti-heroes and messy families, marry the realism of Raymond Carver with the dark humor of an Alexander Payne film. Read this book.”
—Leigh Stein, author of THE FALLBACK PLAN

“Here are the voices of kids among the urban decay and old dogfighters in the mid-twentieth century and West Virginians and Long Islanders and Jersey boys—all people, actual people. Also, a guy gets shot in the ass in this book. That alone’s worth the purchase.”

"Eric Nelson populates the seven stories in “Leverage” with men and women we all recognize — earthy folk, often down-and-out, trying to get ahead somehow and failing miserably. Nelson writes about them with poignancy and winking affection."