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Alissa Nutting Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Tampa (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Made for Love (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Collections Books

Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Alissa Nutting is an American author of fiction. Her fiction has appeared in many publications such as Bomb, Conduit, Tin House, and The Norton Introduction to Literature. She has also penned essays that have appeared in O: The Oprah Magazine, the New York Times, Fence, and more. Alissa Nutting’s short story collection Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls was published in 2010 by Starcheron/Dzanc and it won the Starcherone Prize for Innovative Fiction.

She is an assistant professor in creative writing as well as English literature at John Carroll University. Her first novel was published by Ecco/HarperCollins in 2013 and is called Tampa. Her second novel is titled Made for Love and was published in 2017. She lives in Ohio with her daughter, husband, and two dogs.

The main character of Tampa is Celeste Price. She is twenty-six years of age and works as an English teacher teaching students in the eighth grade in the suburban Tampa district. She is married to her husband Ford, who is a square-jawed manly man who works in the police force who is devoted to her. They live a nice life together and you could call them rich, as Celeste Price drives a red Corvette that has tinted windows, a must if you’re going to be living and driving in Florida.

While Celeste seemingly has the perfect husband, the perfect job, the perfect car and the perfect life, with a well-liked and respected position in the community. However, the truth is that her mind and her thoughts focus on something that isn’t exactly socially acceptable. Her singular obsession is a sexual web as she craves fourteen-year-old boys. She goes about satisfying her desire with a sociopathic attention to detail that is all too perfect; her forethought into becoming a teacher is no accident.

Celeste gets to fulfill her passion as well as live in a world where her position is unquestioned. She gets to work and get a paycheck but her real reason for becoming a teacher is to give herself access to the objects of her compulsion. Tampa opens with Celeste starting a new year with the fall semester beginning at Jefferson Jr. High with a fresh batch of students enrolled for the new year.

Celeste wastes no time in finding a new insect to draw into her web. She chooses the naive and innocent Jack Patrick, a student who she can tell is enthralled with his teacher. But there’s more to the arrangement working out than just a student being into her; she needs a boy who is going to agree to the many extremely important terms of their relationship, the first of which being that their relationship remains a total secret.

This is also important because they are going to be meeting frequently. They meet up in secret car rides that happen after school, at Jack’s house while his father works late, a single parent, and steamy hook ups in the empty classroom that she teaches in between periods. There’s a ton of danger involved every time they meet up, but Celeste is only driven to fulfill her sexual needs and she is mindful of the danger of being exposed with every second that goes by.

Not only that, but Celeste also has to deal with hiding the tryst from her husband and from Jack’s father, who she senses is also attracted to her. Jack is moving from boyhood to manhood, and the thirst that Celeste has is motivated by her intense sexual nature. If she has to deceive everyone along the way to achieve that level of pleasure, she will do it. With Celeste’s obsession being all that she can think about and her willingness to do anything to cover it up while also pursuing it, Tampa is a must read and bold literary debut for Alissa Nutting.

Nutting’s second novel is called Made for Love. The main character in this novel is Hazel. She has freshly moved into a trailer park with a bunch of senior citizens living in it. Who are her roommates? Just her eccentric father and the sex doll companion he has, Diane (who looks really lifelike). They don’t have an ideal life together, but it’s not like there are any better alternatives waiting in the wings.

Hazel has literally just run out on her marriage to a powerful man. Byron Gogol is the founder and CEO of Gogol Industries, a huge corporation that focuses on producing tech and products that are so necessary that they become indispensable to the people who use them, thereby cementing their place in the market.

She has basically lived the life of a Stepford wife for too long, and Hazel put up with the lifestyle of being a quarantined person for over a decade, secluded by herself in the family compound. No movement and no freedom to do what she wanted, as everything she did was tracked and surveilled. When he demands that the two of them be connected wirelessly with the help of brain chips in an attempt at a mind-meld for humans– the first ever done– she has had enough.

Hazel decides that she has lived this life for long enough and what was a dissatisfying life has no longer become tolerable to her. So she leaves the clinical bubble she has been kept in and goes into the real world. It’s a little different than she expected, and there’s more than the fair share of weirdos and oddballs out there. Even if she has to risk everything that she knows, it’s still better than staying behind and forming some type of hive mind with Byron.

In the attempt to get away from her husband, Hazel must go out into the world and get away from Byron once and for all. She is determined to start a new life in this place, but all the while, her husband is working with technology and every tool he has to locate her and bring her back to the estate. With the threat of being found increasing, Hazel must find a way to get away from Byron forever and find her way in the world.

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