Reeling from the Night of Nights, an unexpected blockbuster art show, Floss, a transgender New York gallery owner, invites subversive installation artist Budsy and their best friend the Apostle John to cycle the Camino de Santiago. When Floss tells her friends about her shocking experience at the hands of the King of the New York art scene, the journey becomes an anti-pilgrimage—from spiritual discovery to revenge fantasy. Moving from New York to Spain to Dublin, My Camino is a book about misfits, identity, art and spirituality narrated by the audacious Apostle John whose telling sometimes rhymes, is often hilarious and is always a blistering account of the contemporary art world.
An excerpt from My Camino
The Apostle John Sets the Scene
Let there be light, etc.
A decentered art world oozed across the bridge into Brooklyn, pooling in the area now known as DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) to make a new center of culture. A movement that would eventually spawn galleries and cafés, corporate offices in revitalized factories, real estate developments that capitalized on and even trumpeted the area’s once-famous squalor. Photographs of stone low-rises crowded with immigrants, open sewers, street urchins sleeping on subway grates, all became part of the come-on: the black Moschino thong underneath the business suit, mystique with a tang of blood, the whole rags-to-riches creation myth fluffing the asking price.
You’ve seen the brochure, the one with Brooklyn Bridge at the end of every elegant, tenement-lined street, the perspective and scale hinting tiny town, something doll’s house and cozy in the heart of the heartless metropolis.
That’s the place but not the place.
Our (not my) story begins before that time, on the night the bright star (IT) aligned for the very first time between the masts of the bridges, back when DUMBO was a no-go, a district of warehouses and pot-holed asphalt, deserted by all but predators and their victims.
IT appeared above our humble crib, bringing the tide that caused many boats to rise. Into the manger entered a stranger.
Ask Jesus if God-the-Father’s love is all-devouring?
Ask the Virgin Mary?
Then He Peoples It.
This is the story of Floss and Budsy and me, the Apostle John.
Floss and Budsy—not Beatrix Potter bunnies, but flesh and blood, man and woman, woman and man, and even a little something in between.
PRAISE FOR MY CAMINO
"Scathing, riotous. ..Warner's writing throughout is electric. It's boisterous, bawdy, turbocharged and entirely entertaining. Apostle John is the best kind of narrator — loudly confident one moment, humble and introspective the next, a man of sage opinions and witty, often heartbreaking anecdotes about [his friends] Budsy and Floss, migration, philosophy, music, and the world at large. Reading the book feels like sidling up to the bar with a highly intelligent and hilarious new companion. ..My Camino is an energizing read, a book that asks cheeky and powerful questions about what it means to create (or abstain) in the early 21st Century. "—Toronto Star
“An original and inherently compelling read by an author with a knack for the kind of narrative storytelling that keeps the reader riveted from cover to cover. ..” — Midwest Book Review
“An uproarious satire of the art world and a joyful, episodic novel that will appeal to anyone looking for a non-dreary read. ”—Foyles
"[A] rollicking, peregrinating tale. .." — The Packet
PRAISE FOR PATRICK WARNER
“Warner has a wonderful skill for wielding rhythm and rhyme…engaging and memorable. ” —Canadian Literature
“Warner’s poems can be comical, tender, brutal … they are always enlightening in their implied connections, sublime in their musical inventiveness. ” —Sunday Independent
“I don’t know if anyone in contemporary poetry is bearing more eloquent, precisely strange witness to the certainty of their doubts than Warner. ” —ARC Poetry Magazine