Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles

Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles

“Beautifully, madly, electrically alive.” —LAIRD HUNT
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“I can win any contest involving silence or stillness or maintaining a straight face. I once, presumably out of some heartfelt anger, maintained a silence for so long I forgot who I was. With speech went character, with character memory, with memory me.”

Welcome to the off-kilter world of Finley, an investigator of indiscernible origins and prowess. Her assignment: the mysterious Professor Uppal and his puppets. The objective: impossible to say. But Finley is unassailable. She forges ahead with occasional assistance and hindrance from her colleagues Murphy, The Lamb, and Binelli, as well as the professor’s beautiful daughter and her sinister artiste boyfriend. In her meticulous and completely unbiased report, Finley tracks the investigation’s slow spiral back upon itself, as the clues she uncovers reveal questions that lead directly back to her own forgotten past.

Captivating and whimsical, idiosyncratic and deeply funny, Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles finds inspiration in hard-boiled noir and the tortured quest of an existential inquiry. This novel marks the debut of a powerful, original voice.

Publish Date
5.5 × 8.5 × 0.69 in
12.4 oz

Praise and Prizes

  • “Kira Henehan’s debut has tableaux out of Raymond Roussel, language like a scatterbrained Beckett, and a beautiful disaster of a detective narrator.”

    The Believer
  • “What if Nancy Drew grew up and lived in a bizarrely enigmatic film-noir world? That question is answered in this novel, where we meet Finley: a discerning, meticulous investigator working at a nameless agency… . Kira Henehan weaves a delicious plot of self-discovery as if in a dreamlike state. Each new development reveals a change in Finley’s own existence and resets the very world of the novel itself.”

  • “Kira Henehan has reached into the wheezing carcass of the traditional detective story and relieved it of all its bones and logic. The result is a novel unlike anything I’ve read before: hilarious, severe, baffling, and sometimes so far over my head that I can only see a distant glow.”

    Ben Marcus
    author of The Flame Alphabet
  • “A very intriguing novel filled with insistent rhythms and syntactical playfulness. Kira Henehan’s precision and obvious delight with language make the voice of this novel wonderful company. One is reminded of certain European writers like Beckett or Bernhard, but Henehan has also made something—funny, ominous—of her own.”

    Sam Lipsyte
    author of Home Land
  • Orion You Came and You Took All My Marbles is not just smashingly titled, it is also beautifully, madly, electrically alive. Beware of its puppets. Watch out for Murphy. Keep track of The Lamb. Consider Uppal. Question Finley. Here is worthy work for the fingers, the heart, the eyes, the mind.”

    Laird Hunt
    author of Neverhome
  • “Awesome … Much of the novel’s playful charm comes from Kira Henehan’s unwillingness to explain what, exactly, Finley is up to, but the very funny sleuthing will keep you reading as the investigation reveals glimpses of Finley’s former past.”

  • “In playfully measured prose, Kira Henehan’s poignant farce evokes Beckett and her world is as funny and inventive as that of George Saunders, but her bold voice and tenderness make for something entirely original, entertaining, and well worth the read.”