Imagine...meeting someone with the same name, the same history, the same family, the same identity as you. Now, imagine meeting another person making the same exact claim. What would that do to you?
From the Giller Prize–winning novelist of 419 comes the startling, funny, and heartbreaking story of a psychological experiment gone wrong.
Ever since his girlfriend ended their relationship, Thomas Rosanoff’s life has been on a downward spiral. A gifted med student, he has spent his entire adulthood struggling to escape the legacy of his father, an esteemed psychiatrist who used him as a test subject when he was a boy. Thomas lived his entire young life as the “Boy in the Box,” watched by researchers behind two-way glass.
But now the tables have turned. Thomas is the researcher, and his subjects are three homeless men, all of whom claim to be messiahs—but no three people can be the one and only saviour of the world. Thomas is determined to “cure” the three men of their delusions, and in so doing save his career—and maybe even his love life. But when Thomas’s father intervenes in the experiment, events spin out of control, and Thomas must confront the voices he hears in the labyrinth of his own mind.
The Shoe on the Roof is an explosively imaginative tour de force, a novel that questions our definitions of sanity and madness, while exploring the magical reality that lies just beyond the world of scientific fact.
Will Ferguson is the author of four novels, including 419, which won the Scotiabank Giller Prize. A three-time winner of the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour, he has been nominated for both a Commonwealth Prize and an International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His most recent novel, The Shoe on the Roof, was an instant national bestseller. Will Ferguson lives in Calgary. Visit him at WillFerguson.ca.
PRAISE FOR 419
“A deeply ironic, thoroughly engaged politico-philosophical thriller from a comic writer best known for winning a trio of Leacock Awards…. You won’t sleep until you finish, and then rest won’t come easily. Riveting. Provocative.”
“Ferguson is a keen observer of landscapes and cityscapes, and has a brilliant ear for dialogue and accent…. you will never see those creative 419 emails in your inbox in quite the same way.”
“Heart-wrenching, fascinating, and scary …. An unflinching, ambitious work.”
Praise for The Shoe on the Roof
“Ferguson is a skillful and original writer, and over all, the novel is full of life. . . . The Shoe on the Roof’s lasting strength is in such sly jabs at the “alternative facts” and deep divisions we’re now reckoning with, making it a tale for the times.”
“A powerful read…. Ferguson is a heavy-weight.”