Monday February 28th, 2011

A Preview of The Pale King

This week’s issue of The New Yorker features an excerpt from The Pale King, the posthumous novel by David Foster Wallace that will be published in April. The excerpt starts like this:

Every whole person has ambitions, objectives, initiatives, goals. This one particular boy’s goal was to be able to press his lips to every square inch of his own body.

His arms to the shoulders and most of his legs beneath the knee were child’s play. After these areas of his body, however, the difficulty increased with the abruptness of a coastal shelf. The boy came to understand that unimaginable challenges lay ahead of him. He was six.