Return on Investment
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Return on Investment – a Novel by Magdalena Waz

Winner of the Fiction Attic Press Debut Novel Prize

ISBN: 978-0-9911499-8-8

About This Book

Now available in paperback and e-book editions, the award-winning debut novel by Magdalena Waz.

Release date: September 22, 2016

ISBN-13: 978-0-9911499-8-8 (paperback)

Return on Investment is a wickedly smart, deceptively powerful novel about the uneasy intersection of love and commerce. The unforgettable foursome of young urbanites–motivated by love, lust, and economic necessity–make difficult and often startling choices as they attempt to carve out a niche for themselves in a trying economy.

Laurie hires herself out as a human breast pump, a job that relies heavily on the natural and organic movement to convince new mothers that they don’t need machines to extract breast milk. But when the situation at her job goes sour, she devises a plan to work less and earn more. A dreamer at best and a steam-roller at worst, Laurie hopes to prove to the world that being in an office 9-5 is only for those without an imagination. Her second scheme draws a young housekeeper, a bachelorette party babysitter, and a data entry clerk into the business of manufactured intimacy, a business more dangerous than Laurie is willing to admit.

Sharp, insightful, and darkly humorous, Return on Investment will appeal to fans of Maria Semple, Jess Walter, Jami Attenberg, and Lena Dunham.

Praise for Return on Investment

Waz’s darkly comic first novel reads like the birth of a brand-new genre—call it literature of the dystopian present—wherein a lost generation of post-college twentysomethings struggle against debt, doubt, the loneliness of a constantly-connected world, and an out-of-control gig economy that leads to work as professional cuddlers, human breast pumps, and black-market milk runners. It’d be terrifying if it weren’t so damn funny, prescient if it weren’t precisely of the moment, absurd except for its searing recognition of the all-too-real . . . Return on Investment is an audacious, ambitious debut.  –Joseph Bates, author of Tomorrowland: Stories

Return on Investment is a coming-of-age tale unlike any I have ever read. A quartet of unlikely friends massively in debt and interminably adrift in the post-collegiate, post-recession, start-up economy. The wild scheme that joins them together somehow manages to both satirize and sympathetically explore that wobbling time between youth and adulthood. Swiftly told, at turns hilarious and poignant, Return on Investment is worth every second you put into it. David McGlynn, author of A Door in the Ocean

In Return on Investment, Magdalena Waz brings to vivid life the mighty struggles and Millennial triumphs of a group of young Chicagoans graduating into the Great Recession. Waz’s writing is slyly ironic, her characters’ delightfully inappropriate first jobs, including human breast pump, are shrewdly presented, and their stories are irresistible.   This is a superb first book.  –Eric Goodman, author of Child of My Right Hand and Twelfth and Race


Buy the ebook.

About the Author

Magdalena Waz’s fiction and essays have appeared in Threadcount, The Collagist, and Rabbit Catastrophe Review. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Miami University (Ohio) and currently lives in Brooklyn.


What Goodreads readers are saying:

Return on Investment is funny, smart, and beautifully written. Waz’s style is refreshing for its mix of humor and poignancy and for the honest depiction of the story’s characters. It is a true delight to read. I can’t wait for her next book! ~Patrick, Goodreads