Fake Accounts (Hardcover)

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"This novel made me want to retire from contemporary reality. I loved it." —Zadie Smith

A woman in a tailspin discovers that her boyfriend is an anonymous online conspiracy theorist in this “incisive” and “funny” debut novel that “brilliantly captures the claustrophobia of lives led online and personae tested in the real world” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).

On the eve of Donald Trump's inauguration, a young woman snoops through her boyfriend's phone and makes a startling discovery: he's an anonymous internet conspiracy theorist, and a popular one at that. Already fluent in internet fakery, irony, and outrage, she's not exactly shocked by the revelation. Actually, she's relieved--he was always a little distant--and she plots to end their floundering relationship while on a trip to the Women's March in DC. But this is only the first in a series of bizarre twists that expose a world whose truths are shaped by online lies.

Suddenly left with no reason to stay in New York and increasingly alienated from her friends and colleagues, our unnamed narrator flees to Berlin, embarking on her own cycles of manipulation in the deceptive spaces of her daily life, from dating apps to expat meetups, open-plan offices to bureaucratic waiting rooms. She begins to think she can't trust anyone--shouldn't the feeling be mutual?

Narrated with seductive confidence and subversive wit, Fake Accounts challenges the way current conversations about the self and community, delusions and gaslighting, and fiction and reality play out in the internet age.

About the Author

Lauren Oyler's essays on books and culture have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, London Review of Books, The Guardian, New York magazine's The Cut, The New Republic, Bookforum, and elsewhere. Born and raised in West Virginia, she now divides her time between New York and Berlin.

Praise For…

A Bustle Most Anticipated Debut of the Year 
Buzzfeed Most Anticipated Book of the Year
An Electric Literature Most Anticipated Debut of the Year
A Rumpus Most Anticipated Book of Next Year

"This novel made me want to retire from contemporary reality. I loved it." —Zadie Smith

"[The] narrative voice will ring bells with fans of Oyler’s criticism. It’s confident, knowing, fond of putting on a performance and owning it." —Clare Bucknell, WSJ. Magazine

"An absolutely brilliant take on the bizarre and despicable ways the internet has warped our perception of reality . . . Equal parts witty and deceptive, this is a startling critique of what we know to be true but struggle to accept." ––Elle, One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year

"One of the year’s sharpest debut novels . . . Told in our narrator’s seductive, incisive, and often deceptive voice, Fake Accounts is a ferociously smart dissection of the social media age, where we’re long on carefully-crafted fictions and short on truth."—Adrienne Westenfeld, Esquire, A Best Book of the Year

"Oyler has written a startlingly lucid account of what it does to a person to live a life filled with lies, why it's so painful to be unable to trust anything or anyone, including yourself . . . I laughed a lot while reading this, even when—especially when—I very much saw myself as the joke. What Fake Accounts is ultimately asking, then, is a question we could all do well to pose to ourselves with some frequency: Who do you think you're fooling?" ––Kristin Iversen, Refinery29, One of the Best New Books of the Year

"If you’re looking to understand our political context through the lens of a personal narrative, Fake Accounts is worth preordering . . . In a time when liars become not only famous YouTubers but talk show hosts and even presidents, is it possible to dig through to get to the truth?" —Rachel Charlene Lewis, Bitch

"If you’re looking for fiction that understands the complexities of life online and the way that world seeps into reality, this is it." —Madison Malone Kircher, A Vulture Most Anticipated Book of the Year 

"Lauren Oyler’s Fake Accounts is a delicious commentary on the internet and social media and a compelling story of a woman struggling to find her way . . . The narrator is an excellent liar, yet you feel like she is telling you the truth because of Oyler’s smart prose, which is often directed to you, the reader." ––Alma, A Favorite Book for Winter

"An absorbing, intelligent, charmingly meta novel about what it’s like to live right now, both on and off the internet." ––Literary Hub, One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year

"Set to hit high highbrow on the hypemeter for its 'savage and shrewd' account of a young millennial’s mediation of life via the internet." ––The Millions, One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year
Product Details
ISBN: 9781948226929
ISBN-10: 1948226928
Publisher: Catapult
Publication Date: February 2nd, 2021
Pages: 272