Mad Diary of Malcolm Malarkey by Mark Axelrod
A Gogolian nightmare from the point of view of a small-town English professor. The Mad Diary of Malcolm Malarkey is a kind of post-modern May-December black comedy about the 60ish, cancer-stricken Oxford educated, Irish English literature professor, Malcolm Malarkey who falls in love with the beautiful, 30ish Italian returning graduate student, Liliana Liliano, who, by then, has tragically lost her husband in an auto accident. Malarkey has no respect for things that are politically correct and often runs into problems with the administration if not the local police, while Liliana. after years of trying to crack the glass ceiling, quits the corporate world and returns to university to pursue her passion: literature.
After a relatively quick relationship they fall in love. Though they have much in common and they truly love each other, the potential stumbling block for them is her desperation to get pregnant, especially since she has already had a miscarriage not long before her husband died. Malarkey has already raised a family, and is still ceaselessly harassed by his Brazilian ex and her bevy of blood-sucking barristers, and the thought of starting a family again and potentially leaving Liliana a widow for a second time with a young child, is a major dilemma for him. Try as he might to salvage the relationship, Malarkey eventually loses Liliana because of his multiple impotencies. Though Malarkey loves Liliana deeply, madly, she eventually breaks it off. True love may last forever, but eggs do not.
Months after her separation, Liliana meets and marries a Florentine who, in rapid succession, impregnates her with the children she most desires. Though Malarkey realizes the break was the best for her, it wasn't for him and he tries in earnest to move on with his feckless existence, but not before telling her he'll love her forever.
Mark Axelrod is a Professor of Comparative Literature in the Department of English at Chapman University, Orange, California, and has been Director of the John Fowles Center for Creative Writing for 23 years. His latest fiction books include Balzac's Coffee, DaVinci's Ristorante and the translation of Balzac's play, Mercadet, which was retitled, Waiting for Godeau, and Beckett's Bar, Pushkin's Vodka . His latest books of literary criticism include, Madness in Fiction: Literary Essays from Poe to Fowles and his book, Notions of Otherness: Literary Essays from Cahan to Maraini were published by Palgrave and Anthem respectively. His screenplay, MALARKEY, based on his novel, The Mad Diary of Malcolm Malarkey, PhD, has garnered the interest of Malcolm McDowell and is currently being shopped. He was inducted into the European Academy of Arts and Sciences, Salzburg in 2017.
- Deep Vellum
- Imprint : Dalkey Archive Press
- Fall 2022
- On Sale: Mar 17/23
- Paperback | 5.5 x 8.5
- FICTION / Literary