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Foster Dade Explores the Cosmos

Foster Dade Explores the Cosmos

ISBN: 9781419764776
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By Nash Jenkins
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Prep meets The Secret History in this searing debut novel about a tragic scandal at an American prep school, told in the form of a literary investigation through a distinctly millennial lens

When Foster Dade arrives at Kennedy, an elite boarding school in the Northeast, the year is 2008. Barack Obama begins his first term as president. Kanye West’s “Graduation” bumps from the newly debuted iPhone; teenagers share confidences and rumors over BlackBerry Messenger and iChat. The internet as we know it today is slowly emerging from its cocoon. So, too, is Foster emerging—a transfer student and lonely young man, Foster is stumbling through adolescence in the wake of his parents’ scandalous divorce and his own budding anxiety disorders. But Foster soon finds himself in the company of Annabeth Whittaker and Jack Albright, the twin centers of Kennedy’s social gravity, who take him under their wing to navigate the cliques and politics of the carelessly entitled.

Eighteen months later, Foster will be expelled, following a tragic scandal that leaves Kennedy and its students irreparably changed. But when a nameless student inherits Foster’s old dorm room, he begins an epic yearslong investigation into what exactly happened. Through Foster’s blog posts, playlists, text archives, and interviews with former classmates, and the narrator’s own obsessive imagination, a story unfurls—Foster’s, yes, but also one that asks us who owns our personal narratives, and how we shape ourselves to be the heroes or villains of our own stories.

Foster Dade Explores the Cosmos is about privilege and power, the pitfalls of masculinity and its expectations, and, most distinctly, how we create the mythologies that give meaning to our lives. With his debut novel, Nash Jenkins brilliantly captures the emotional intensities of adolescence in the dizzying early years of the twenty-first century.