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“Anastas’ humor and self-deprecation put you on his side, make it easy to forgive the failures he so readily cops to.”

J. Nicole Jones, The Los Angeles Review of Books

Too Good to be True

A Memoir

The most affecting father-son story since Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, this astonishing memoir is a gut-wrenching account of a life at the crossroads. When he was three, Benjamin Anastas found himself in his mother’s fringe-therapy group, a sign around his neck: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE. The phrase haunts him at forty, when everything around him lies in tatters.

Broke, his promising literary career gone, Anastas is hounded by debt collectors as he tries to repair a life ripped apart by the spectacular implosion of his marriage, which ended when his pregnant wife left him for another man. Anastas’s fierce love for his young son forces him to confront his own childhood, fraught with mental illness, divorce, and the fumes of hippiedom. Charged with rage, despair, humor, and hope, this unforgettable book gets to the core of what it means to be a father.

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“The sly fiction’s greatest strength is the finely tuned voice Anastas has created for William, who takes us (in a non-linear way) through his childhood, adolescence and early adulthood without ever faltering in his often droll, deadpan delivery…. In our culture, where fame, celebrity, wealth and other forms of empty achievement are overly venerated, it is bracing to meet this thoughtful narrator.”

Los Angeles Times

An Underachiever’s Diary

A Novel

Meet William, a devout underachiever. He enters life as the firstborn of identical twin boys. It is the last time he will beat his overachieving brother Clive, or anyone else for that matter, at anything.

This is William’s manifesto for the underachiever. It is the chronicle of a lifetime of failure–-part diary and part handbook for self-defeat. At once corrosively funny and surprisingly tender, An Underachiever’s Diary is a classic tale of perverse perseverance.

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“This is the rare novel that can get away with putting the ending at the beginning … Anastas’s gifts for description and characterization make this work a literary as well as a satirical masterpiece.”

Salt Lake City Deseret News

The Faithful Narrative of a Pastor’s Disappearance

A Novel

A young, charismatic African-American pastor disappears from his local parish of W—, a comfortable bedroom community in suburban New England. In the backlash and impending investigation, no satirical stone is left unturned. Especially those within the Caruso household, an ordinary American family hollowed out by their world of convenience and easy moral remedies.