The New Naturals

A Novel
by Gabriel Bump

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Critically acclaimed, for readers of Paul Beatty's The Sellout and Jennifer Egan's The Candy House, a moving and darkly funny novel about an attempt to found an underground Utopia.

An abandoned restaurant on a hill off the highway in Western Massachusetts doesn't look like much. But to Rio, a young...
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Published By Algonquin Books

Format Hardback

Number Of Pages 304

Publication Date 11/14/2023

ISBN 9781616208806

Dimensions 5.85 inches x 8.6 inches

Included in Fall Preview & Most-Anticipated Lists: New York Times, Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Chicago TribuneEsquire,, W MagazineThe MillionsGoodreads, and Lit Hub

"A Blithedale Romance for the 21st century, only less naive and more complex.  Race, class and gender collide in all the ways they do in the so-called real world. Bump's prose is fresh and frequently surprising. This is funny, sad, sad-funny and funny-sad and just plain smart."

“A booming talent whose latest reads like Ann Patchett shot through Percival Everett.”

— Chicago Tribune

“Given the size of the thing it indicts — not only America, but the entirety of modern society — it’s a somewhat spectacular achievement that Gabriel Bump’s second novel, The New Naturals, feels as fun as it does. …sharp, witty… Bump has a real talent for describing how it feels to feel too much…[he] is an excellent writer”

— New York Times Book Review

“[Bump] is just a really gifted, musical writer. And sometimes you just want that experience of a book that you really want to talk to somebody about. And I feel like this is going to be that book.” – Holiday Recommendations by Rumaan Alam

— NBC / Today

"Bump spins a Möbius strip of a tale... [The New Naturals] threads a palpable yearning for a collective reality... Bump seems to suggest that true paradise is unattainable. But because it is an idea, utopia is eternal."

— The Atlantic

“The New Naturals is a fascinating book, frequently funny, even more frequently heartbreaking, and tuned in to the reality that change is the only constant in a profoundly broken world.” – Michael Schaub

— The Boston Globe

“The Best Books of Fall 2023” – “Imaginative… Keenly observed and darkly funny, The New Naturals is a compelling portrait of what happens when our hopes collide with our limitations.”​

— Esquire

“Fascinating... truly a novel for our modern moment. It’s a stunning achievement in imagining possibilities for a spent world.”

— Chicago Review of Books

"Wry and astonishing … Brisk dialogue and flashes of mordant humor pay off, and Bump cannily grapples with such issues as gentrification, microaggressions, and environmental racism. This is a scalding study in human nature.”

— Publishers Weekly

“Bump captures our contemporary condition with grace… [A] sharp, imaginative novel”

— The Boston Globe

“The New Naturals is a tragicomedy for our times, exploring that age-old question of how to connect with our fellow human beings and build community, even as the world makes increasingly less sense. A tour-de-force, full of heart and asking the big questions about life and the mind.”

"The New Naturals explores how grief can become aspiration, how aspiration can become wildness. Bump writes so tenderly about the human error endemic to man-made things---community, partnership, love."

“Gabriel Bump's brilliant and surprising novel The New Naturals takes us inside a utopian world and, even more deeply and wondrously, inside the souls of an impressive array of characters. Through them, Bump holds up a mirror to our own grief, longings, and rage in the face of a cruel, crumbling society. Intricate and intimate, Bump's prose is simply masterful.”

“A keenly observant work of literary fiction, revealing provocative insights into what happens when ideals, aspirations, and human fallibility collide.  I was both gripped and hypnotized by Bump’s distinctive voice, so unique I couldn’t help but reread passages just to relive its poetic cadence.  I flew through the pages.  I fell in love with characters who not only shared my concerns but hopes and sympathies as well. THE NEW NATURALS is bold, funny, dark and masterful.”

“Gorgeous and lyrical… An effecting, experimental tale of race and reinvention”

— Kirkus Reviews

“Our booksellers have already devoured it. Bump has a knack for writing stories about human connection that leave us feeling hopeful. This won't be one to miss.”

— USA Today

“[An] ambitious and fascinating premise.”

— Literary Hub

“Innovative… Bump slyly evokes the messiness of building community... He never loses sight of his characters’ humanity, maintaining his and our empathy for even the most foolish seekers among us.”

— Booklist

“Surprisingly tender. A tragicomic portrait of the longing people share for a better world, The New Naturals is a thought-provoking and head-spinning sophomore novel.”

— Shelf Awareness

“In Gabriel Bump’s melodic story of attempting to heal, following the death of their newborn daughter, a pair of married academics builds an underground utopia.”

— Vanity Fair

“Wry… A perceptive and timely story for readers of Jennifer Egan’s The Candy HouseThe New Naturals captures our humanity with candor and grace.”

— B&N Reads

"For readers of Paul Beatty’s The Sellout and Jennifer Egan’s The Candy House, Bump’s (Everywhere You Don’t Belong) exciting new novel is about the search for love and connection in the 21st century."


“Poignant… The New Naturals is a powerful novel that resonates long after the final page…”

— Seattle Book Review

“Dazzling… Gabriel Bump’s second novel proves again that he is a writer to watch. …Bump's followup to Everywhere You Don't Belong reads like a dream.”

— Minneapolis Star-Tribune

“An underground utopia serves as the backdrop for this exciting new novel. …fast-paced…it's the urgency of the prose that propels the narrative forward, keeping you engaged and invested.”


“A wryly funny take on the human condition.”

— People

"Gabriel Bump showcases a cast of relatable and deeply human characters as they attempt to create a perfect society in an imperfect world."

— Poured Over / Barnes & Noble