Buffalo Lockjaw (Paperback)

By Greg Ames

Hachette Books, 9781401309800, 304pp.

Publication Date: April 1, 2009

List Price: 14.99*
* Individual store prices may vary.

June 2009 Indie Next List

“James Fitzroy is headed home to Buffalo for Thanksgiving, but he and his family are struggling with very big questions about the end of life, the quality of life, and assisted suicide. Ames' novel is is funny, tragic, sad, and troubling all at the same time.”
— Ann Reierson, Inklings Bookshop, Yakima, WA
View the List


James Fitzroy isn't doing so well. Though his old friends in Buffalo believe his life in New York City is a success, in fact he writes ridiculous taglines for a greeting card company. Now he's coming home on Thanksgiving to visit his aging father and dying mother, and unlike other holidays, he's not sure how this one is going to end. Buffalo Lockjaw introduces a fresh new voice in American fiction.

About the Author

Greg Ames' stories have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies, including The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2007, Open City, McSweeney's, and other publications. He also received honorable mention in the 2003 Pushcart Prize Awards. He grew up in Buffalo, NY, and now lives in Brooklyn, and teaches Creative Writing at Brooklyn College.

Praise For Buffalo Lockjaw

"Greg Ames, one of the funniest writers I've ever read, faces dead-on the most terrifying event in a person's life. Buffalo Lockjaw is frightening, heart-rending, and beautiful. I pay it my highest compliment: I didn't want it to end."—Poe Ballantine, author of Things I Like About America

"Greg Ames has written a beautiful novel. It is infused with dark comedy and pathos and great, hardboiled prose. In Buffalo Lockjaw, love of one's parents and love of one's hometown mix powerfully with the mad undertow of loss that seems as inevitable in life as gravity. I'm honored to share a last name -- no relation -- with such a wonderful writer."—Jonathan Ames, author of Wake Up, Sir!

"In Buffalo Lockjaw, Greg Ames manages to evoke place and expose the complexities of character in a single swift phrase. It is a funny-sad, heartbreaking, hypnotically readable debut."—Adrienne Miller, author of The Coast of Akron

"The voice of this novel invites you right in, and Ames knows how to build up the world with a light hand while still getting to the complicated and painful ways we muddle through. Funny and fresh and generous."—Aimee Bender, author of The Girl in the Flammable Skirt

"Buffalo Lockjaw, like its charming, bitter screw-up of a narrator, reaches finally for larger meaning, and succeeds. Greg Ames has written a brazen and tender book about a city and a scene, a mother and a son, and the beauty and pain of several kinds of love."—Sam Lipsyte, author of Home Land