It’s here at last! Laura Albert’s international bestseller, the JT LeRoy book The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, has been released as an audiobook by Blackstone Publishing and made available through Audible. You can order your audiobook from IndieBound or from Amazon!
A dazzling array of 21 celebrated readers – writers, actors, musicians, filmmakers, artists – have gathered to participate in this unique literary event. Reading the ten classic stories of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things are Christelle de Castro, Donovan Leitch, Laura Desiree, Kerris Dorsey, Julie Mintz, Winsome Brown, Michael Imperioli, Libby Mintz, Joshua Caleb Johnson, and Darnell Martin.
For the seven additional JT LeRoy stories included in the HarperCollins reissue of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things, we have as readers Lawrence Rothman, Paul Mendez, Pamela Sneed, Shirley Manson, Julie Mintz, and Laila Hayani, PLUS Laura Albert as JT LeRoy reading “Balloons”!
And there’s more! Not only does this audiobook also include filmmaker Jeff Feuerzeig, the auteur of Author: The JT LeRoy Story, reading the Foreword he wrote especially for the reissue of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things; but we have also included four more JT LeRoy stories, three previously uncollected and one never before published – and they’re read by Alissa Bennett, Daniel Newman, Soko, and Robin Weigert.
The interconnected stories of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things depict the chaotic life of a young boy on the run with his teenage mother. When Sarah reclaims Jeremiah from his foster parents, he finds himself catapulted into her world of motels and truck stops, exposed to the abusive, exploitative men she encounters. As he learns to survive in this harrowing environment, Jeremiah also learns to love his mother, even as she descends into drug-fueled madness. Told in spare, lyrical prose, rich with imagination and dark humor, the savagery of Jeremiah’s world is transformed into an indelible experience of compassion.
Gender fluidity, well before it had become part of the public discourse, was an essential component of not just the JT LeRoy books but JT’s persona as well, and a heightened awareness of these and other LGBTQ issues followed the worldwide success of the novel SARAH and the stories of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things. The reveal in 2006 that Laura Albert was the actual author of the JT LeRoy books sent shock waves through the literary establishment. Yet JT’s challenges and experiences were her own, expressed through the metaphor of his identity – “JT was like asbestos gloves that enabled me to handle material too super-heated for me to touch directly.” And the books’ readership kept on growing, with new editions released in 2016. That she wore the mask of JT LeRoy in order to speak her truth has continued to exert a deep response from not just readers but filmgoers as well, with documentaries and biopics examining the JT LeRoy story.
Bringing to life the celebrated reissue of SARAH is Obie-winning actor Winsome Brown, reading the complete text; internationally acclaimed artist and filmmaker Leigh Ledare reads Billy Corgan’s Foreword.
Hear an excerpt BELOW or by LINK!
Published in 20 different languages, SARAH has been an international bestseller since its initial release 20 years ago, acclaimed for the poetry, compassion, and humor that infuse this unforgettable tale.
In the novel a boy watches his mother survive as a “lot lizard” – a prostitute working the truck stops of West Virginia – and hopes to win her love by surpassing her as the best and most famous lot lizard ever. So as “Cherry Vanilla,” he embarks on a strange journey through the Appalachian wilds, by turns hilarious and shocking, magical and realistic.
On March 31, 2021 a special ZOOM gathering was held, and Laura was joined by writers Grant Faulkner and Nicole V. Gagné along with six readers from audiobook of The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things – actors Winsome Brown, Kerris Dorsey, Julie Mintz, and Daniel Newman, Naked News anchor Laura Desiree, and photographer/artist Christelle de Castro – to celebrate the audiobook’s release. And you can see it right HERE! We did a second one on May 14, 2021 – with actors Winsome Brown, Joshua Caleb Johnson, Donovan Leitch, and Libby Mintz, filmmaker Darnell Martin, authors Alissa Bennett and Pamela Sneed, and artist Laila Hayani – which can be seen OVER HERE!