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- Paperback: 172 pages
- Publisher: Two Dollar Radio (July 1, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1937512185
- ISBN-13: 978-1937512187
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 7.5 inches
Remy is a young girl who lives in a town that believes in crystal count: that you are born with one-hundred crystals inside and throughout your life, through accidents and illness, your count is depleted until you reach zero.
As a city encroaches daily on the village, threatening their antiquated life, and the Earth grows warmer, Remy sets out to accomplish something no one else has: to increase her sick mother’s crystal count.
An allegory, fable, touching family saga and poetic sci-fi adventure, Shane Jones underlines his reputation as an inspired and unique visionary.
*One of the best books of 2014 —Flavorwire, Entropy Magazine, Esoterrorist
"Crystal Eaters is a dense, high-energy read, despite being fairly short. Its breadth of topics is exhilarating. Jones is pushing genres here, not unlike George Saunders or Karen Russell, but using a harsher lens. Crystal Eaters grabs your face and pushes it up against a fantastic, sprawling, impressionistic painting of death and family."
"Jones has been bridging the magical and somewhat whimsical with stories that can resonate with anybody, and Crystal Eaters might be his most touching and best work to date."
"An allegorical wonder, a masterfully told fable for our time."
"For most writers, logic is a restraint that’s always telling them what they can and can’t do. Shane Jones ignores most logic and instead invents his own."
"Jones demonstrates a tightrope-like eye for finagling between Pynchon-esque quasi-science-fictional feelings and the book’s physics, allowing almost anything to happen at any time, wrapped in a Wallace-like grip of childlike awe. The result is a novel that, paragraph to paragraph, is alive with imagination. Crystal Eaters is the rarest of kinds of objects, one that replenishes its readers’ crystal counts by simply being read."
"Line by line, it’s impossible to break away. Transcending conventions with singular brilliance..."
—The L Magazine
View the awesome HORN! REVIEWS review in short graphic novel/comic form.
"In Crystal Eaters, Jones basically invents a language of death, which is no small feat. Crystal Eaters resonates with a kind of psychological truth that results in a very harrowing story."
"[Jones is] something of a millennial Richard Brautigan. Read this if you want to read a book so visual that it will inspire you to create artwork of your own."
"Crystal Eaters is a twisty, sharp fable of adolescence, of grief, of growing. There is magic here, but it is wrapped up in the death of loved ones, in the pain of growing up, and in the looming threat of total environmental destruction."
"Crystal Eaters is full of sentences that jump at you like a pop-up book, painting a world that is at some times painfully real, and at others an exercise in vivid hallucinations. Jones is pushing genres here, not unlike George Saunders or Karen Russell, but using a harsher lens. Crystal Eaters grabs your face and pushes it up against a fantastic, sprawling, impressionistic painting of death and family."
"In Jones' world, a range of colors lives inside each person—in fact, that very rainbow gives the body its power, its life. And although death will one day drain those colors from each person, Crystal Eaters reminds us that life itself is a luminous thing."
"A powerful narrative that touches on the value of every human life, with a lyrical voice and layers of imagery and epiphany."
"A mythical and hallucinatory experience of a family fighting mortality."
"Crystal Eaters is splattered with Technicolor crystal vomit and eye goo, with bodies leaking red, yellow, and blue; the sun wants to swallow the earth; and the indestructible city encroaches on the country like kudzu. This crystal mining country is Jones’s own Yoknapatawpha County, a town with its own peculiar inhabitants and notions and schemes (such as a prison break in reverse). These fantastical trappings give way to deeper questions—about death, the nature of life, of what it takes to be remembered after you die."
"So utterly gorgeous and weird and human and devastating."
"Jones goes a million miles an hour into this invented place, and the result is a stunning capture, a perfectly resonant picture of our impermanence."
"Shane Jones creates a world where the rapid encroachment of the city, oppressive heat, and toil mean that people turn to belief in numbers. And crystals. They turn to the belief that if they can quantify life, they might be able to harness and extend it. That the city sits in opposition to the village way of life raises questions about how our limited worldview might affect our understanding of life. Ultimately, it's Adam's belief that seems to make the most sense. 'He said that the true way to extend one's count was to have others remember you.' "
"Crystal Eaters touches upon addiction, estrangement, innocence, apocalypse, and a monolithic city that dominates the horizon and threatens to overtake Remy’s crystalline world. Though at its center is a tale about a family. Remy’s family, full of love and sorrow over their mother’s inevitable passing, crystals dripping from her one by one."
—Coal Hill Review
"The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that Shane Jones is probably way smarter than me and you should buy this book."
"A grounded epiphany of the highest order, revealing the stark and majestic grace that is present within the loss each living thing must endure. Page after page, Jones's exquisitely styled prose drugs the ear like otherworldly music—this pyretic, hallucinatory novel stings with beauty at every turn."
Shane Jones' first novel, Light Boxes, was originally published by Publishing Genius Press in a print run of 500 copies in 2009. The novel was reviewed widely, the film optioned by Spike Jonze, and the book was reprinted by Penguin. Light Boxes has been translated in eight languages and was named an NPR best book of the year. Jones is also the author of Daniel Fights a Hurricane and The Failure Six.