Parade by Michael Graves

“Parade is a pop lit gem. With neon prose, Graves weaves a tale of two heroes, Reggie and Elmer, who are trying to sort out the mess that is America. Government, religion, civic responsibility, general kindness. The lessons in Parade might just be the answer.”

– James Frey –
Author of A Million Little Pieces, Bright Shiny Morning and The Last Testament

“Michael Graves is one of those super rare storytellers who is magically able to write with wisdom, poignancy, and dark wit. Parade is a joy to read – it plums the troubles, foibles, and disconnects of our world in an incredibly timely and wonderfully timeless way that’s hilarious, steely-eyed, and hopeful.”

– John Jodzio –
Author of Knockout and If You Lived Here You’d Already Be Home

“Michael Graves’ Parade is a tipsy Southern gothic with a Northern accent, featuring a classic array of characters. Graves has a knack for captivating dialogue, and his ease with comedy and drama, sometimes in the same scene, earns this literary road-movie-in-a-limo-spectacle a well-deserved confetti and ticker tape shower.”

– Gregg Shapiro –
Author of How to Whistle: Stories – Expanded Edition

“Parade is a madcap blasphemous Bildungsroman that is equal parts zany and profane. And ultimately, profound. Say your prayers before climbing into this stolen limo because everything is about to change.”

Josh Denslow
Author of Not Everyone is Special

“Michael Graves has written a comic yarn that will both make you laugh and move you to tears. Reggie and Elmer are the queer Thelma and Louise I never knew I needed, complete with sexy Jesus-dreams, grand theft auto, and a retired televangelist. Y’all don’t want to miss this wild yarn – a true triumph!”

– Nick White –
Author of How to Survive a Summer and Sweet and Low

“With sparkling prose and beautifully drawn characters, Parade is like a gorgeously crafted fabergé egg of queer fiction.”

– Eric LaRocca –
Author of Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke

“Parade is a wild ride of self-discovery, featuring a hugely diverse cast of likeable misfits and oddballs. Michael Graves sketches the human experience with an unflinching eye and real heart. A vibrant coming-of-age tale pulsing with raw humanity.”

– Tomas Marcantonio –
Author of This Ragged, Wastrel Thing

“Parade is unapologetically brilliant, told with a dark, raw and refreshing lyricism that makes for a totally beguiling tale, a story that Truman Capote or Hubert Selby Jr would be proud of penning.”

Ross Jeffery
Author of Juniper and Tethered

“Parade is one jigger Capote’s Answered Prayers, a jigger of Tennessee Williams’s story ‘Two on a Party,’ and a generous pour of Michael Graves’s tenderly transgressive yet never abrasive tonic of satire and sweetness, all of it going down bracingly, not bitter. It is a story of callow youth contrasted with the tough and ultimately ruefully true choices that adulthood tries to force us into. In the author’s hands the narrative of rite of passage and religious hypocrisy goes down unsettlingly, which is the mark of the mixer’s skilful hand.”

Michael Carroll –
Author of STELLA MARIS: And Other Key West Stories and Little Reef and other Stories

“Like the Beat Generation writers before him, or Hunter S Thompson’s ‘Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas’, Graves uses a fresh, contemporary, and stylistically original voice to offer darkly comic, satirical perspectives on the false gods of the Great American Dream: celebrity, religion, government, and excessive consumption. But, in the final analysis, Parade’s main preoccupation is the question of who we love, what we love, and why: a theme he explores with joy, humanity, hope, and humour.”

Sian Hughes –
Author of Pain Sluts

“A delightfully lyrical and endearing coming-of-age story with characters that stay with the reader long after finishing the novel. Graves writes with an unapologetic and unflinching depth that delivers the narrative goods.”

– Anthony Self –
Author of Birthday Treat

“With boyish exuberance and sparkling dialogue, Michael Graves delivers a deliciously queer tale that’s part coming of age and part buddy flick. Elmer’s and Reggie’s adventures in their search for home is full of surprises.”

Christopher Castellani
Author of Leading Men and All This Talk of Love

“Parade is a riotous story of friendship and faith. Michael Graves’ debut novel is Roddy Doyle meets Hubert Selby Jr; told with great humour, compassion and a unique insight into the darkest corners of the human condition. Through the characters of Reggie, Elmer, and a tremendous supporting cast of misfits and oddballs, Graves takes us on a roadtrip across an America struggling to find its new identity, while two young men go in search of theirs. Above all, this is a book that reminds us of how vitally important it is, now more than ever, to hope for something better and to try our hardest to get there.”

Rick White
Author of Talking to Ghosts at Parties

Reggie Lauderdale suffers from a crisis of faith. His cousin, Elmer Mott, dreams of becoming their hometown mayor. Both boys are stuck in suburbia trying to be adults … but they aren’t sure how to be themselves yet. When a twist of fate sends them fleeing in a stolen limousine, the cousins escape to Florida where they meet a retired televangelist, who inspires them on a path of glitzy sermons and late-night parties. But are the celebrations sincere or deceptive? And who is keeping tabs? Who is watching? Parade is a tour-de-force, comic tale of faith and friendship.

Michael Graves is the author of Parade and Dirty One, a collection of short stories which was a Lambda Literary Award Finalist and an American Literary Association Honouree. Michael’s fiction has been published in numerous literary publications. He can be found online at

Recent Reviews of Parade:

Out in Print

On The Bookshelf

Gnome Appreciation Society

ISBN: 978-1-9163258-0-7
RRP: £9.99

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Read Michael Graves’ previously published STORGY words below:

Jump Rope Girls

I’ve Learned a Thing or Two: Lessons from My First Novel

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