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Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination

Book cover for I Can Give You Anything But Love
Book cover for I Can Give You Anything But Love

A beloved memoir from one of the most acclaimed radical writers in American literature—whose graphic, funny, and caustic voice has by turns haunted and influenced the literary and artistic establishments.

With I Can Give You Anything but Love, Gary Indiana has composed a literary, unabashedly wicked, and revealing montage of excursions into his life and work—from his early days growing up gay in rural New Hampshire to his escape to Haight-Ashbury in the post–summer-of-love era, the sweltering 1970s in Los Angeles, and ultimately his existence in New York in the 1980s as a bona fide downtown personality. Interspersed throughout his vivid recollections are present-day chapters set against the louche culture and raw sexuality of Cuba, where he lived and worked occasionally over the past decades. 

Connoisseurs will recognize in this—his most personal book—the same mixture of humor and realism, philosophy and immediacy, that have long confused the definitions of genre applied to his writing. Vivid, atmospheric, revealing, and entertaining, this is an engrossing read and a serious contribution to the genres of gay and literary memoir.

Book cover for I Can Give You Anything But Love
Book cover for I Can Give You Anything But Love

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“A graphic and funny memoir, [I Can Give You Anything But Love] finds Indiana reinventing yet another genre - this time using his own personal narrative. He becomes the connective tissue that binds together a diaspora of subcultures: the beatnik-era experimental writing and happenings of downtown New York, the 1960s co-opted counterculture gone awry, the punk movement that followed, and the art and intellectual circles of the Reagan 80s, when the AIDS crisis was wiping out a generation of young gay men like him.”

“Beautifully written, Gary Indiana’s ‘memoir’ is one of his greatest books: a heartbreaking, astringently accurate account of the tidal shifts between the American 20th and 21st centuries. Indiana is one of the smartest, most truthful writers living today.”

“I Can Give You Anything but Love recounts the wicked adventures of old Gary in Cuba and young Gary living dangerously in the demimondes of LA, San Francisco, Boston, and New York, in prose so conversant and apt it’s like a superpower, like ease in a foreign element, breathing underwater or flying. Fueled by Swiftian indignation at our unbelievable stupidity, accuracy is a kind of revenge on a world that declines to return our love. Young Gary suffers the opposite of an education: he unlearns till all that remains is chaos and invisibility. He respects beautiful flesh and friendship’s damaged utopia as he encounters others who are also desperate, brilliant, and sometimes famous.”

“Gary Indiana's memoir is written with both laconic distance and a sense of urgency. It is comic and then almost melancholy. He can create memorable characters and dramatic moments in stylish sentences that seem effortless. But, more than anything, this book is a display of a personality that is sardonic and sharp, fiercely intelligent, vulnerable and original.”

Gary Indiana

GARY INDIANA is a novelist and critic who has chronicled the despair and hysteria of America in the late twentieth century. From Horse Crazy (1989), a tale of feverish love set against the backdrop of downtown New York amid the AIDS epidemic, to Do Everything in the Dark (2003), "a desolate frieze of New York's aging bohemians" (n+1), Indiana's novels mix horror and bathos, grim social commentary with passages of tenderest, frailest desire. With 1997's Resentment: A Comedy, Indiana began his true crime trilogy, following up with Three Month Fever: The Andrew Cunanan Story (1999) and Depraved Indifference (2002). Together, the three novels show the most vicious crimes in our nation's history to be only American pathologies personified. In 2015, Indiana published his acclaimed anti-memoir, I Can Give You Anything But Love and later the novel Gone Tomorrow. Called one of "the most brilliant critics writing in America today" by the London Review of Books, "the punk poet and pillar of lower-Manhattan society" by Jamaica Kincaid, and "one of the most important chroniclers of the modern psyche" by the Guardian, Gary Indiana remains both inimitable and impossible to pin down.