Z Staehling has been signed to publishing house Blue Room Books for his first novel-length fairy tale “Full Past Noise: An Escapist Odyssey for Search of American Balsam” to be published in 2023.
A huge hole in the literary world opened and got wider with the deaths of John Kennedy Toole (“A Confederacy of Dunces”) and American libertarian political satirist and journalist P.J. O’Rourke. But there is hope yet for sweet truth told brutal in the form of one Z Staehling who brings us “Full Past Noise: An Escapist Odyssey for Search of American Balsam”.
Twenty-one years old in 2022, Georgia native Staehling has written a brilliant commentary on just about every aspect of the modern social order — and done it in the form of a novel-length fairy tale.
Publisher Angela K. Durden said, “It would be fair to say the author skewers everyone and everything. He made us relish once again the absurdity of the human condition and laugh at those who believe that absurdity can be legislated out of existence.”
The story follows the protagonists, four boys in a Rock and Roll band they name That Old Time Religion, who have recorded an album. Their music is so purely raw and lyrics so brilliantly obtuse that only those in search of truth will understand them, be moved by them, and go crazy from hearing them.
Of course, the next thing that must be done is to set out on their first-ever tour of the United States making a wide arching loop from their home in Georgia down to Florida and up the East Coast to the Northeast and across plains and mountains to the ocean white with foam.
During this tour they meet characters embodying the best and worst of society. From the politically correct to religion to farmers to strippers to pedophiles to porn stars to Furries to aging Rockers to audiences in search of their next Rock and Roll fix to out-of-control addict Juan Pablo who begins the book with his review of the band and their album then hunts them down and holds them at gunpoint, Z Staehling allows the characters to skewer themselves as they attempt to justify their way of life.
Luminous and dazzling character and scene-setting detail coupled with the use of language that takes no prisoners, the story unfolds with the same controlled abandon as the lyrics to Helter Skelter do in The Beatles’ 1969 song on the White Album otherwise known as The Beatles.
Just as Helter Skelter was the forerunner of heavy metal music, Z Staehling’s novel “Full Past Noise: An Escapist Odyssey for Search of American Balsam” can surely be called the forerunner from a new breed of writer who isn’t afraid of hurting feelings if hurting those feelings will lead the reader to examine their own mind, heart, and soul to get to that all important truth.
Tom Whitfield, Blue Room Books Editor in Chief, said, “If this young man can make this cynical old man laugh and nod in recognition of people he’s known in his life, then I predict Z will go a long way in the literary world and maybe, just maybe, he will lead the vanguard of youth who aren’t afraid of truth.”
Please contact the publisher for more information.
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