Neon in Daylight

Author(s): Hermione Hoby


Three lives collide in New York City in the summer of 2012. An exhilarating debut novel that announces the arrival of a writer who "channels the spirit of Joan Didion and the keen observational eye of Ben Lerner to show us the here and now" (Alexandra Kleeman).


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Praise for Neon in Daylight "What do you get when a writer of extreme intelligence, insight, style and beauty chronicles the lives of self-absorbed hedonists--The Great Gatsby, Bright Lights, Big City, and now Neon in Daylight. Hermione Hoby paints a garish world that drew me in and held me spellbound. She is a marvel." --Ann Patchett, author of Commonwealth "Neon in Daylight is a classic New York City novel--sleek and stylish, both in literary craft and in the milieu portrayed. Hermione Hoby's misfits combust on the page, but what sets this book apart is that her city isn't just a playground--it's remarkably lonely, punctuated by a series of connections and breakdowns that leave you feeling compassion for the characters long after the book is finished." -- Stephanie Danler, New York Times bestselling author of Sweetbitter "Bracingly intelligent and imbued with deep, humane wit, Neon in Daylight is an ode to the transience of the present, an exploration of the fierce and fragile bonds that guide us. Hermione Hoby channels the spirit of Joan Didion and the keen observational eye of Ben Lerner to show us the here and now, made luminously real." -- Alexandra Kleeman, author of You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine "Neon in Daylight perfectly nails the humidity, hustle, and heartbreak of being young in New York City. With the eyes and soul of a flaneur, Hermione Hoby's prose renews the physical world like a near-death experience. Smart and classy, this debut novel is, like neon, both rare and lighter than air." --Tony Tulathimutte, author of Private Citizens "Highly propulsive reading. . . . With effortlessly fluid prose, Hoby, herself a New York transplant from London, excels most promisingly in depicting the vivid, perhaps most iconic American city, especially as seen through the eyes of a curious and perceptive newcomer." --Booklist "In language so vivid that readers could break a sweat in an igloo, debut novelist Hoby brings to life the seamy underworld of bright, bored people during a suffocating New York City summer, demonstrating the sure hand seen in works by Bret Easton Ellis and Tama Janowitz." --Library Journal "[A] promising debut. . . . This is a sharp novel with perceptive observations . . . and vivid, complicated relationships." --Publishers Weekly "Hoby is a master of atmosphere." --Kirkus Reviews "Hermione Hoby's debut novel up close is beautifully chaotic. Back up to the entire picture and it is a shimmering, reflective surface that allows us to see what we, and the world, are made up of. Set in New York City in the hazy summer of 2012, Kate, newly arrived from England and seeking a change in perspective, meets Inez, a magnetic and anarchistic beauty, then randomly, Inez's father, Bill, a stagnant yet successful has-been author. As they move through the summer tangled in each others' lives, Hoby plays with elements of narcissism, maturity, isolation, and love, with a depth and understanding that is wholly human. This is a novel that hums with the irony and incredulity of life; a mirror-pond of the human spectacle." --Charlotte Bruell, Literati Bookstore (Ann Arbor, MI) "Hermione Hoby's debut novel, Neon in Daylight, is a deeply felt dive into the loneliness of city life. Her characters revolve around one another--their efforts to form real connections through sex and drugs always falling just short of the mark--against the backdrop of an almost apocalyptic New York filled with heatwaves and hurricanes. Hoby juxtaposes our need to belong with our misfit desire of being too cool to belong to create a perfect book." --Emily Ballaine, Green Apple Books (San Francisco, CA) "Hermione Hoby makes writing seems effortless. She writes as if Neon in Daylight is her hundredth novel, not her first. Her descriptions of both outside scenes and inner lives are sharp and perfect. New York is the city that produces infinite fodder for writers, but there are only a few novels that prove we need yet another New York book. Neon in Daylight is most definitely one of them." --Anton Bogomazov, Politics & Prose (Washington, D.C.) "Long story short, I loved loved loved it. I know this sounds like a classic blurb cliche, but it's honestly one of the best books I've read in a long time and I'm already recommending it to everyone. Bracingly honest, sharp, and gritty... I think Hoby created the sort of amazing "figuring yourself out" in New York novel that so many writers attempt yet don't quite achieve. Can you tell I loved it?" --Sarah Cassavant, Subtext Books (St. Paul, MN) "In an ocean of New York City coming-of-age novels, it's hard to stand out--but Neon in Daylight did. Hermione Hoby writes with a prose so compelling and gorgeous that after I finished the book I looked her up to see if maybe she was a poet. The characters she created were interesting and sometimes infuriating and I felt my heart get broken with them. It's also one of those rare books that gets the sensory detail just right, that made me feel oppressed by heat and almost sweaty. I loved this book. I picked it up on a whim and didn't put it down until I was done." --Sarah Malley, Newtonville Books (Newton, MA) "Neon in Daylight is the story of a sultry and surprising New York summer. Hoby is such a rich observer. She is able to distill a scene to its details, which is what I read for: the specifics of a character's life laid bare. As the summer slides on, Hoby's characters reveal themselves to us in intimate, exhilarating fashion, and I couldn't tear my eyes away." --Tyler Goodson, Avid Bookshop (Athens, GA) "Like many of Catapult's other titles, British author Hermione Hoby's debut is smart and quirky and cool. It exudes a kind of sexuality that is very much of the moment, culturally speaking. I wouldn't give it to my seventy-five-year-old mom, but to millennials, or even their parents (that's me), I enthusiastically endorse this terrific book about a young woman finding herself by losing herself in NYC." --Becky Dayton, Vermont Book Shop (Middlebury, VT) "There are plenty of novels about hedonistic young people, or washed-up alcoholic writers, or aimless academics struggling to find themselves. Few of them are written with the intelligence, freshness, honesty, style, observational eye, and command of language on display in Hermione Hoby's impressive debut, Neon in Daylight. As the lives of the three main characters (and a cat named Joni Mitchell) converge against the backdrop of a lonely, doomed, and dying downtown New York City, you'll find yourself missing your bus stop because you can not put down this book." --Nadine Vassallo, Book Soup (West Hollywood, CA) "There is a point in this book in which a character ruminates on how we may go about viewing ourselves as we view spectacular city skylines. How do we zoom out? How do we separate ourselves from the avenues of our own lives; how do we see ourselves, as one beautiful whole? And how can we know another person if we don't know ourselves? Hermione Hoby doesn't answer these questions for us, but she does make us ponder them in a striking, shimmering voice that is all her own. This is no regular New York coming-of-age novel. It is weird and charming and full of that unnamable thing that is just so New York...that those strangers around you could--in an easily missed split-second encounter--change your life forever. This is an electric debut." --Claire Tobin, Literati Bookstore (Ann Arbor, MI) "There is no doubt about it--Hermione Hoby can write. She crafted a charming and beautiful story, even though the content could be a little rough at times. I couldn't put Neon in Daylight down. I raced through it wanting to find out how exactly their lives would intertwine. And when I got there, it felt so right and poetic, even though it was a bit painful. The whole story just worked and came together perfectly in the end." --Kristen Beverly, Half Price Books (Dallas, TX) "Neon in Daylight is a smart and insightful debut about an emotional love triangle, recommended for fans of Sweetbitter and Conversations with Friends. As an outsider who moved to Brooklyn around 2012, I can say with authority that Hermione Hoby perfectly captured the feeling of being frustratingly lost and sweaty in a never-ending New York summer." --Matt Stowe, Greenlight Bookstore (Brooklyn, NY) "Hermione Hoby's debut is curiously engrossing and delightfully bizarre. Through telling the story of three rough-cut characters, the book explores coming to terms with who you are, as well as this strange world we all live in." --Renee Becher, Old Firehouse Books (Ft. Collins, CO) "I enjoyed Neon in Daylight very much. Often the 'coming of age in NYC' story can feel tired, but I found Hoby's writing insightful and nuanced." --Lesley Rains, City of Asylum Books @ Alphabet City (Pittsburgh, PA) "What a great new voice. I love it when I open a book and am immediately taken away and consumed." --Julie Slavinsky, Warwick's (La Jolla, CA) "Moving from England to New York--not such a big deal, right? Well, actually it's almost mind-numbing if you're Kate and you've left a boyfriend behind and don't have much to do but sit around staring at a cat you've been hired to sit. Oh, but there's all those wonderful people out on the streets, in the shops and cafes, and you're bound to find someone interesting who doesn't need to be Skyped every day. And along comes Bill and daughter Inez, and your life takes a fast left, then a hard right, and then you end up . . . well, let's just say your life becomes a lot more interesting. Intrigued yet? Try it out and see what you think. It's worth every penny." --Linda Bond, Auntie's Bookstore (Spokane, WA)

General Fields

  • : 9781936787753
  • : Catapult
  • : Catapult
  • : January 2018
  • : 208mm X 140mm X 23mm
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Hermione Hoby
  • : Paperback