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For years Gerald lived for his twin passions, acting and sex. And as a handsome young actor, he found plenty of opportunities to perform in both arenas. But that was many years ago, long before the AIDS epidemic hit the theater world especially hard - and gay circles even harder. No longer young or in demand as either a performer or a lover, Gerald is waiting to die. He has drawn up a last will and testament, a living will, assigned a health care proxy, and arranged his own cremation. He has thrown out hundreds of eight-by-ten photos accrued over his twenty-five years as an actor, boxes of gay porn, all his journals, and acquired a hefty collection of barbiturates for when things got too "icky." Just when it appears things could get no "ickier," William Weiss calls and Gerald's life is resurrected. A brilliant and eccentric avantgarde director, Weiss invites Gerald to perform in a play in Sicily. As a founding member of Weiss's first company, the School for Life, Gerald is all too aware of the director's cult-like hold over actors, but unable to resist a final bow in a foreign land, he accepts. Early signs bode ill for Gerald's trip. From the first rehearsal, Weiss nurtures the chaos in which he is most at home. Furthermore, Gerald's health remains precarious as he begins to suffer fevered hallucinations. But as opening night approaches, the play, under the director's singular vision, begins to take shape. For Gerald, Sicily, the Italians, an unexpected encounter in a warm sulfuric stream and his love of the theater reconnect him with lost joy. His spirits soar and he finds himself transformed by the ecstasy of everyday life.
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About the Author

Keith McDermott is a novelist and actor. His writing has appeared in Fresh Men: New Voices in Gay Fiction, Men on Men 7, Boys Like Us, and Loss within Loss, as well as in Out, Nest and the James White Review. As an actor, Keith has worked on, off, and off-off Broadway, making his Broadway debut opposite Richard Burton in Equus. He has worked with director Robert Wilson in America, Europe, Russia, and Japan. He lives in New York City.


"Funny and angry, wry and as observant as a hungry robin, the protagonist of Keith McDermott's beautifully written novel sees (and has seen) it all.... It's hard to believe this is a first novel, so acute are the insights, so achieved is the design, so eloquent is the language."

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