The Committee - A Novel
“Transmutes Lavender Scare investigators’ ruthless assaults on suspected homosexuals in 1950s Gainesville into heart-racing fiction.” —New York Journal of Books
In the late 1950s, Gainesville, Florida, seems to be a sleepy university town. Its residents live, by outward appearances, ordinary lives. And yet the town is far from ordinary. The most private acts of professors, students, townspeople rich and poor, and politicians are under the close scrutiny of a shadowy group of men—the Committee—who use the powers of government and the police to investigate, threaten, and control this increasingly fearful community.
The Committee pits friends against friends and threatens careers and lives in a struggle for the soul of a town, a university, and an ideal. Based on actual historical events and set against the backdrop of political, cultural, and class turmoil, this is a story of love—both licit and hidden—war, friendship, betrayal, compromise, and finally the necessity to stand firm against the encroachments upon freedom by men who believe they are doing God’s and the government’s righteous work.
“The Committee takes place on campus, but deserves to be included with those ‘academic’ novels like Mary McCarthy’s The Groves of Academe, Randall Jarrell’s Pictures from an Institution, Kingsley Amis’s Lucky Jim, and Jane Smiley’s Moo, all books that burst out of their scholarly settings to light up the characters and societies they live in . . . This book will hold you to the very end, and after.” —Peter Meinke, Creative Loafing Tampa Bay
“At once an historical, political, and academic novel, and it is one that succeeds on all these fronts.” —Reviewing the Evidence