One rainy afternoon in a Brooklyn diner, Peter Howland punctures an egg with his fork. Repulsed, Peter pushes the plate away and never eats again.


One rainy afternoon in a Brooklyn diner, Peter Howland punctures an egg with his fork. Undercooked, the egg oozes a thick, snot–like goo; repulsed, Peter pushes the plate away and never eats again. Fifteen years later, feeling as fit as the first foodless day over a decade ago, he heads to Paris, arguably the gastronomic center of the universe, to have another go at food. Enter, Dallas Foster, a mysterious individual who leaves a dramatic and unshakable impact on Peter’s life.
An offbeat, incisive observation of the ways in which we thrash into and cling onto each other; bursting with vivid dialogue, intricately painted characters and a breathtaking plot, Gag is a fantastically written portrait of two strangers entangled in the most curious of relationships. This inventive novel wanders down unexpected avenues and uncovers the darkest corners of both its characters and the serpentine city in which they converge.


Gag, brief but brilliant, shines out with a unique glimmer in the skies of the contemporary novel. From the very first sentence – which epitomizes the quirky mood of this innocuously short novel – we topple down from the cliffs of realism into a world located just one lopsided step from ours. A novel for the strong-hearted and quick-witted, Melissa Unger’s gem of a first novel throws us head first in a dizzying, high-speed rollercoaster adventure, in which it becomes a tough job to make out top from bottom.. ~ Claire Lejeune, San Francisco Book Review:

Gag is the most unsettling and unexpected of Parisian love stories. It examines two characters whose secrets bind them together rather then keep them apart. I was unable to put Gag down with its Martin Amis like acerbic wit and constantly surprising turn of events. It's a sour little morsel, but one you can't help but devour. ~ Christina Wayne, CEO Assembly Entertainment, television producer and executive: Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Copper and Broken Trail.

Melissa Unger is an important new voice in modern fiction… She picks up where Camus left off … her work is astonishing both in its nod to the history of literature and in its incredible originality. Read this and be amazed. ~ Stacy London, author of the New York Times Bestselling book, The Truth About Style. Co-host of the popular television show What Not to Wear.

Gag is a delectably twisted version of the American-in-Paris story; a tale of hurt, loss, redemption and love, where damaged people collide… The plot careens from one surprising turn to another, keeping the reader enthralled until the last, crazy, heartbreaking page. ~ Mira Kamdar, author of the award-winning memoir Motiba’s Tattoos and the critically acclaimed Planet India.

Unger's Kafka-esque tale sweeps from Brooklyn to Paris to points Beyond, into a strange new world which grows stranger by the page. ~ Charles Graeber, award-winning journalist and New York Times bestselling author of The Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder.

Melissa Unger
Melissa Unger Melissa Unger began her professional career in 1989, working for director Ralph Ziman as a production manager of his music videos in London ...
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