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The Autobiography of Jenny X

A Novel

Lisa Dierbeck

"Fast. Funny. Twisted." —Joseph O'Neill, author of Netherland

From Mischief + Mayhem in association with OR Books

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About the Book

On the surface of things Nadia Orsini’s life appears comfortable and unremarkable – Ivy League educated, happily married to a doctor, a mother of three, and a moderately successful photographer. But not all is as it seems. Nadia has been telling lies. Nobody, not even her family, knows about her past, her dark dealings with a U.S. senator, or the scandal she was caught up in surrounding his young son. Then, Nadia receives a disturbing package in the mail and her mask threatens to disintegrate, exposing a horrifying secret. She realizes someone is spying on her, has broken in to her studio and rummaged through her hidden safe. If she can’t stop them, she will lose her husband, family, suburban home – and the precarious hold on her own singular identity.

Meanwhile, from a prison cell in the mountains, a convicted felon named Christopher Benedict is hatching a plot. The leader of a shadowy group of Aktionists, he writes daily to a woman known only as “Jenny X.”

Lisa Dierbeck’s startling first novel, One Pill Makes You Smaller, gave an unflinching, raw account of a relationship between a charismatic adult man and an underage girl. Set in the gritty art world of the 70s, its surprising humor, honesty and eroticism drew acclaim from numerous publications, including The Boston Globe, The Los Angeles Times, O (the Oprah magazine), Publisher’s Weekly and The New York Times Book Review, which named it a Notable Book of 2003.

About The Autobiography of Jenny X:

“Baader Meinhof meets Marvel comics.” —Pagan Kennedy, author of The First Man-Made Man.

“Some books have a black heart. This one has a black-light heart: Lisa Dierbeck’s gripping novel about a love triangle between a Senator’s son-turned-artist-turned-convict, a straitlaced oncologist, and the woman who they both love glows with vibrant strangeness.” —Ben Greenman, author of What He’s Poised To Do.

“Gripping.” —O, the Oprah Magazine

“Fast-paced, psychologically taut … beguiling … sly and sharp.” —New York Observer

“A tale of secrets and lies unraveled … a page turner with lots of sharp cultural observations.” —Newsday

“Dierbeck … has created one of the most recognizable and fully realized characters we’ve seen in ages.” —Time Out Chicago

“Cause for alarm.” —Vanity Fair

About One Pill Makes You Smaller:

“A shocking and accomplished first novel.” —Newsday

“Mordantly funny…Alice’s experiences are miserable, harrowing, illuminating and wonderful.” —Mary Gaitskill, author of Veronica

Publication November 30th 2010 • 288 pages
paperback ISBN 978-1-935928-20-1 • ebook ISBN 978-1-935928-19-5

About the Author

Lisa Dierbeck is the author of the critically acclaimed debut novel One Pill Makes You Smaller, a New York Times Notable Book. A two-time Pushcart Prize nominee, she has contributed to publications including The Boston Globe, Glamour, The New York Observer, The New York Times Book Review, People, O, and Time Out New York. Her fiction has appeared in The Baffler, Black Book, Cimarron Review and New Letters, among others, and in such anthologies as O’s Guide to Life: The Best of O, and Heavy Rotation: 20 Writers on the Albums that Changed Their Lives.

In the Media

MobyLives, April 4th 2011

Thirteen, March 31st 2011

Lit Fest Magazine, March 7th 2011

Elevate Difference, February 27th 2011

Friday Reads, February 18th 2011

Lit Fest Magazine, February 2011

The Believer, February 2011

O, the Oprah Magazine, February 2011

O, the Oprah Magazine, January 24th 2011

The Nervous Breakdown, January 1st 2011

TimeOut Chicago, December 30th 2010

The Nervous Breakdown, December 24th 2010

The Salt Lake Tribune, December 23rd 2010

Open Letters, December 7th 2010

Happy Endings, December 7th 2010

The Boston Phoenix, December 7th 2010

The New York Observer, November 22nd 2010