This is the first cover to result from the recent Noir Nation photo shoot at the Kettle of Fish, home of the famous Jack Kerouac bar sign. The models on the cover are film actors Thomas Wesson and Dasha Kittredge.
In Awake Now, Sailor, noirishly poetic seafaring novel, Cass Loyola, a merchant seaman, abandons the ocean seas to pursue literature and love at a button-down college in New York City. As he struggles to adjust to his new life, he is haunted by the woman he left behind in Cardiff—a bookbinder and practicing witch.
At once a seafaring novel, a Cuban novel, and Catholic novel, given its reliance on Thomas Aquinas and Teresa of Ávila to understand the changing cosmos of daily life, Awake Now, Sailor includes pirate fights in the Bay of Bengal, gypsy cab rides into the dark heart of Brooklyn, a drunken mountain climb in Wales, cane cutting in Oriente de Cuba, an encounter between a U.S. Marine and an academic poet, and a smashed guitar in a Havana radio station that ends a musical career.
The book also offers décima campesinas, a poetic form popular in Cuba, and an original sea shanty translated into Welsh by British poet Menna Elfyn.