The Grip of it
FSG Originals, forthcoming 2017
The Grip of It tells the eerie story of a young couple haunted by their new home. Julie and James settle into a house in a small town outside the city where they met. The move—prompted by James’s penchant for gambling, his inability to keep his impulses in check—is quick and seamless; both Julie and James are happy to leave behind their usual haunts and start afresh. But this house, which sits between a lake and forest, has plans for the unsuspecting couple. As Julie and James try to settle into their home and their relationship, the house and its surrounding terrain become the locus of increasingly strange happenings. The architecture—claustrophobic, riddled with hidden rooms within rooms—becomes unrecognizable, decaying before their eyes. Stains are animated on the wall—contracting, expanding—and map themselves onto Julie’s body in the form of bruises; mold spores taint the water that James pours from the sink. Together the couple embark on a panicked search for the source of their mutual torment, a journey that mires them in the history of their peculiar neighbors and the mysterious residents who lived in the house before Julia and James.
Written in creepy, potent prose, The Grip of It is an enthralling, psychologically intense novel that deals in questions of home: how we make it and how it in turn makes us, mapping itself onto bodies and the relationships we cherish.
A Different Bed Every Time
NAMED on of Amazon's best Story collections of 2014
Dzanc Books, 2014
A thief steals the air from a room. Children invent a nursery rhyme to make sense of their fate. A band of girls rot from the outside in. These characters stumble through joy and murder and confusion, only to survive and wait for the next catastrophe to arrive. Moments so brief and disturbing you can't afford to look away. Jac Jemc's affecting stories mine the territory between what is real and the stories we tell to create understanding.
My Only Wife
Named a Finalist for the 2013 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction and winner of the Paula Anderson Book Award
Dzanc Books, 2012
Ten years ago the narrator unlocked the door of a wrecked apartment, empty of any trace of his wife. As stunning as her disappearance is his response. He freezes on the facts of her, haunting his recollections. This is the story of a man unable to free himself enough from the idea of a woman to try to find her.
Theses Strangers She'd Invited In
Greying Ghost Press, 2010
A vessel carrying fourteen strangers docks at the piers of your fingertips. Their stories creep up your arms. A few nestle in the valleys of the mountains that were once your goosebumps. Most never travel past your biceps but by then you can’t put the book down. You become the vessel that’ll carry these strangers to new strangers. Let Jac Jemc be your captain.