The Dissection of Vertebrates

The Dissection of Vertebrates
Publisher: Asymmetrical Press
Release Date: January 9, 2018
Genre: Novel / Literary Fiction
Length: 359 pages



On the final day of their honeymoon in San Francisco, where they’ve just had their first threesome, John and Beth Hempel board a plane in awkward silence, headed for their new home in Bozeman, Montana. Also in Bozeman: Beth’s best friend, the stoic, carefree Rebekah Fleckman, with whom both John and Beth are in love.

As John and Beth’s marriage gets off to a rocky start haunted by past tragedies and present failures, Rebekah enters her long-delayed final year of college. And while navigating a world of Wiccan sex magick, online media, and partially anatomized laboratory animals, all three struggle to come to terms with what they are, where they’re going, and who they want to be.


“It is rare the writer who can so deftly build characters that feel like people you’ve known, but Shawn does exactly that in The Dissection Of Vertebrates. A smart novel that explores the entanglements of young romance in the modern age. Reading it feels like peeking into the inner lives of folks you’ve met along life’s way.” –Patrick Rhone, author of Enough