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ISBN: 978-1733015370

The Man with Wolves for Hands

Publication Date: October 2022


With panting, slobbering wolves where his hands should be, The Man with Wolves for Hands builds shelves, attends an HR meeting, gets drunk in a kiddie pool with his friend The Cowboy, and stumbles into a bacchanalian wake, held in a forest clearing, for a deceased soldier. In The Man with Wolves for Hands, metaphor folds into allegory, folds into psychological exploration, folds into a meditation on trauma and struggle. Elements of myth and folklore anachronistically color the narrative, creating a story that winds itself through both the present and some distant, primordial past.

The Man with Wolves for Hands was originally published by Southeast Missouri State University Press.


“A man leads his life with a wolf attached to each of his arms. We see him mowing the lawn, building a bookshelf, sipping coffee and Old Crow, often with unsuccessful assistance from the wolves. The narrative proceeds, the man somehow navigates an absurd world in this absurd body, encountering a cast of various characters: a chef, a teacher, a cowboy, a storytelling doctor, and a Golden Minstrel. Ramirez is a master of the particular (yes, the devil’s in the details). He describes a “kirtle of lichen” and the filth under the cowboy’s fingernails, for example. And many of his lines read like stage instructions, drawing out and emphasizing the enormity of mastering what is second nature to us. There are paeans to his father and childhood, and a mockery of health insurance reps, both of which lighten the mood. Part Kafkaesque, picaresque, burlesque, farce, and memoir, this preposterous, yet fully imagined novel is a real gem.”
—Sarah Gorham, author of Alpine Apprentice and Bad Daughter

“Juan Eugenio Ramirez renders the colorful denizens and stark strangeness of the Sunshine State with a poet’s eye and an absurdist’s heart. Weirdly funny and wildly fun, The Man with Wolves for Hands is a marvel of a novel. Ramirez might be our new Harry Crews—or maybe our Lorca.”
—Ryan Ridge, author of New Bad News and American Homes

The Man with Wolves for Hands blends origin myths and apocalyptic revelations, feral fairy-tale and sharp-toothed satire, whimsical daydreams and vivid nightmares. Weird fiction just got wilder—and more beautiful.”
—Annie McClanahan, author of Dead Pledges: Debt, Crisis, and 21st Century Culture

About the Author

Juan Eugenio Ramirez

Though born in Washington state, Juan Eugenio Ramirez spent most of his formative years in Florida. He holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College. His work has appeared in The Carolina Quarterly, Armchair/Shotgun, and Madcap Review. Juan lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where he teaches English at the Francis Parker School of Louisville.

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