. . .Vee just wants to know where to set the gift down, but, wandering her sister’s backyard—a sprawling urban farm whose layout of garden beds seems designed to frustrate—she finds no pile of presents.
None at all.
At a sprawling urban farm in the hills above Berkeley, a woman's attempt to give a birthday present to her four-year-old nephew erupts into an epic quest, increasingly nightmarish and violent, to survive our deepest cultural chasms. A wickedly funny satire of parenting and privilege, sex and politics, set in the shadow of civil unrest.
Advance praise for Family, Genus, Species
"Kevin Allardice harnesses his great powers of description and ingenious sense of narrative for this viciously funny satire, FAMILY, GENUS, SPECIES. Laurence Sterne would have been proud to call Mr. Allardice a descendent."
- Michael Kimball author of Big Ray, Us and Dear Everybody
"With poignant wit, Kevin Allardice draws us into this backyard fairytale and social satire. Vee is a memorable protagonist, quirky and brave and tender. Fast-paced and suspenseful, FAMILY, GENUS, SPECIES is compelling and utterly original."
- Vanessa Hua author of Deceit and Other Possibilities
"...a sharply observed comedy of liberal manners that takes place entirely at a 4-year-old’s birthday party. After all, the Bay Area is pretty good at making fun of itself, and in Family, Genus, Species, Allardice — an Oakland native and Berkeley resident — peddles fairly standard comic fare. Moreover, at this point, we’re all pretty good at making jokes about the tragically homogenized world in which we live and raise our delicate children. So, I thought, the book must be registering as great because it resonates with my own experience. But as I read on, I came to see that Allardice’s deft novel is actually deceptively complex, layered not simply with satire, but with emotional revelations about family, community, sexuality, parenthood, race, and class..." - Nina Renata Aron at Full Stop
Kevin Allardice is the author of the novel Any Resemblance to Actual Persons (Counterpoint, 2014). He was born in Oakland, California, and was a Henry Hoyns fellow in fiction at the University of Virginia, where he received his MFA in 2010. His short stories, winner of the of the Donald Barthelme Prize and twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize, have appeared in The Santa Monica Review, The Florida Review, Gulf Coast, The North American Review, and elsewhere. He currently lives in Berkeley, California.
Family Genus Species
$14.00 paperback ISBN 9781944853204
Vee just wants to know where to put the present. She’s gripping it, two-handedly, thumbs flicking the curled-up corners of tape. She’s holding it at a distance like a bomb, or maybe just something smelly.