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Don't Skip Out on Me
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About the Author

Willy Vlautin is the author of the novels The Motel Life, Northline, Lean on Pete, The Free, and Don't Skip Out on Me. He is the founding member of the bands Richmond Fontaine and The Delines. He lives outside Portland Oregon.

Reviews

"Magnificent.... Willy Vlautin is now one of America's great writers." --Roddy Doyle
"The world needs more Willy Vlautin, and Dont' Skip Out on Me is his best novel yet." --Jonathan Evison, author of This is Your Life, Harriet Chance and The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving
"[T]here's a distinct sense of foreboding in the air as Vlautin slowly lets this poignant tale unwind to its inevitable, heartbreaking conclusion. A powerful, haunting portrayal of lives rendered in unflinching, understated prose."--Kirkus Reviews
"Singer-songwriter Vlautin's latest (The Free) is another quietly devastating addition to his growing canon of spare and heartrending contemporary Westerns... Vlautin's unerring ability to write without artifice or judgment about hardscrabble people trying to do good makes him the literary heir to the late Kent Haruf."--Library Journal (starred review)
"Vlautin's prose is deceptively simple, his clipped descriptions loaded with meaning. The narrative is as unsparing as Hopper's fights, but what stays standing is a profound sense of hope, a hope that drives society's downtrodden and provides the theme for much of Vlautin's work."--Financial Times
"Vlautin's sparse, plan sentences are well-matched to the brusque world he depicts. At the same time, his compassion for his characters never wavers."--Sunday Times (London)
"Lean on Pete riveted me. Reading it, I was heartbroken and moved; enthralled and convinced. This is serious American literature."--Cheryl Strayed, The Oregonian
"A debut road-trip novel that echoes the spare, bleak style of such writers as Denis Johnson and Raymond Carver...[Vlautin] conveys the pain and desolate lives of his characters without a hint of melodrama"--Washington Post (on The Motel Life)
"Beautifully crushing and complete."--John Doe, author of Under the Big Black Sun and co-founder of X
"I absolutely loved Don't Skip Out On Me, just as I have loved all of Vlautin's previous novels. Vlautin's gritty, scrappy world bursts with a tenderness that will hook you in from the first line to the last. This is a writer who should never be ignored."--Jessica Anya Blau, author of The Trouble with Lexie and Drinking Closer to Home
"In this powerful novel, Vlautin (The Free) writes about characters whose big dreams and plans are often stunted by fate and circumstance, but who've managed to find a way to push through, bruised but with hard-won wisdom. . . . excellent."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"No one anywhere writes as beautifully about people whose stories stay close to the dirt. Willy Vlautin is a secular--and thus real and profoundly useful--saint."--Lidia Yuknavitch, author of The Book of Joan
"Northline shines with naked honesty and unsentimental humanity. The character of Allison Johnson, and the wounded-but-still-walking people she encounters on her journey, will stay with me for a long while. Vlautin has written the American novel that I've been hoping to find."--George Pelecanos
"Vlautin is a writer with incredible heart, and The Free is his best achievement yet, a profound look at characters living on the margins, honest people who have been hit hard by the dark realities of a difficult world."--Los Angeles Review of Books
"Vlautin unerringly captures the heartbreak of the generational divide -- as every older generation realizes it cannot protect its younger charges from making their own mistakes as they forge their own way."--Coast Weekend
"Vlautin's eye for detail is sharp: every character is distinctly drawn and memorable.... for sheer cinema-verite detailing of American life right now, Lean on Pete is a good place to start."--Jane Smiley, The Guardian
"Willy's novel Lean on Pete was one of my favorite reads of the last decade. I might love The Free even more. 'Cinematic minimalism' in the grand tradition of Fat City, Ironweed, and the works of the great Raymond Carver.--Patterson Hood, songwriter and musician, Drive-By Truckers
"With straightforward economy, he draws us into [the characters'] seemingly intractable problems, revealing their persistence and decency... Vlautin's unadorned narrative is affecting; these unassuming characters bore into us in surprising ways."--New York Times Book Review on The Free

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