Out on 26 May 2022


Julia May Jonas

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26 May 2022
256 pages

'There’s no chance that Julia May Jonas’s darkly funny Vladimir will slip under the radar' Daily Mail

A provocative, razor-sharp, and timely debut novel about a beloved English professor facing a slew of accusations against her professor husband by former students a situation that becomes more complicated when she herself develops an obsession of her own . . .

When I was a child, I loved old men, and I could tell that they also loved me.

And so we meet our deliciously incisive narrator: a popular English professor whose husband, a charismatic professor at the same small liberal arts college, is under investigation for his inappropriate relationships with his former students. The couple have long had a mutual understanding when it comes to their extramarital pursuits, but with these new allegations, life has become far less comfortable for them both. And when our narrator becomes increasingly infatuated with Vladimir, a celebrated, married young novelist who’s just arrived on campus, their tinder-box world comes dangerously close to exploding.

With her bold, edgy, and uncommonly assured literary debut, Julia May Jonas takes us into charged territory, where the strictures of morality bump up against the impulses of the human heart. Propulsive, darkly funny, and surreptitiously moving, Vladimir maps the personal and political minefield of our current moment, exposing the messy contradictions of power and desire.

Funny, wise and instantly engaging, Vladimir is how I like my thrill rides: brainy and sexy.

Maria Semple, author of Where'd You Go Bernadette

Vladimir is a thrilling debut – smart, sharp, and über provocative. I devoured it with fascination and awe.

Lily King, author of Writers & Lovers

A reminder that the best art involves a search for truth. Vladimir is funny, clear, awake, vivid.

Amitava Kumar, author of Immigrant, Montana