Updated September 19, 2015 to reflect in-stock status at SPD.
We always knew there was space in the world for Joy Williams’ 1978 novel, The Changeling. When Fairy Tale Review Press reissued the novel in 2008 via a 30th anniversary reprinting, we hoped to expose our readers to an unfairly maligned wonder of fairy-tale art. We have to admit we’ve been pleased with the response to the reissue, and its continued demand.
Seven years later, with Williams’ newest short story collection, The Visiting Privilege, on its way into the world, we are pleased to announce our eighth print run of The Changeling since reissuing it in 2008, which will open the haunting and surrealist novel up to more readers, and allow existing devotees to get their hands on a print copy for the first time. We’re happy to say that the novel has never fallen out of print since we took over its stewardship—rather demand has been unexpectedly and wonderfully strong. The novel is now available through our distributor, Small Press Distribution; Amazon will continue to accept orders until it collects on its stock of copies, which should happen soon. Currently, the book is available as an ebook through our partners at Weightless Books.
A recent New York Times profile on Williams described The Changeling as “boozy and mysterious” and posits that The Visiting Privilege “cements Williams’s position not merely as one of the great writers of her generation, but as our pre-eminent bard of humanity’s insignificance.”
The piece also failed to mention the novel’s “happy ending” with Fairy Tale Review Press, despite its initial commercial missteps, but in that piece’s stead we are happy to carry on the tradition of keeping The Changeling alive. In his forward to our 30th anniversary reissue, novelist Rick Moody says: “The tectonic movement of her paragraphs and her narratives no longer looks impulsive, if indeed it ever did. Now it looks exactly like originality.” We couldn’t agree more.
A short excerpt from the beginning of The Changeling:
There was a young woman sitting in the bar. Her name was Pearl. She was drinking gin and tonics and she held an infant in the crook of her right arm. The infant was two months old and his name was Sam.
The bar was not so bad. Normal-looking people sat around her eating pretzel logs. The management advertised it as being cool and it was. There was a polar bear of leaded glass hanging in the center of the window. Outside it was Florida. Across the street was a big white shopping center full of white sedans. The heavy white air hung visibly in layers. Pearl could see the layers very clearly. The middle layer was all dream and misunderstanding and responsibility. Things moved about at the top with a little more arrogance and zip but at the bottom was the ever-moving present. It was the present, it had been the present, and it was always going to be the present. Pearl was always conscious of this. It made her pretty passive and indecisive usually.
She was wearing an expensive dress although it was spotted and the wrong weight for the weather. She had no luggage but she had quite a bit of money. She had just come down from the North that morning and had been in the hotel just a little over an hour. She had rented a room here. The management had put a crib in the room for Sam. When they had asked her name she had replied that it was Tuna, which was not true.