Is it possible for books to dream? For books to dream within books? Is there a literary subterranea that would facilitate ingress and exit points through these dreams?
These are some of the questions posed by David Keenan’s Monument Maker, an epic romance set in an eternal summer, and a descent into history and the errors of the past; a novel with a sweep and range that runs from the siege of Khartoum and the conquest of Africa in the 19th century through the Second World War and up to the present day, where the memories of one summer and an unforgettable love affair unravel.
A book within a book within a book, a meditation on art and religion, and on what it means to make monuments. A hallucinatory epic and a forward-looking history of the world, Monument Maker was written over the course of ten years and represents the apex of Keenan’s project to create books that are themselves teeming with organic life.
“I sometimes think David Keenan dreams aloud. His prose has the effortless enigmatic, unsettling quality of dream.”—Edna O’Brien
David Keenan’s This Is Memorial Device won the Collyer Bristow Award for Debut Fiction and was shortlisted for the 2017 Gordon Burn Prize. His second novel, For the Good Times won the 2019 Gordon Burn Prize. Edna O’Brien described reading his third novel, Xstabeth (Europa, 2022), as “feel[ing] like being cut open to the accompanying sound of ecstatic music.” His fourth novel, Monument Maker, will also be published by Europa. He lives in Glasgow, Scotland.