Leyner, Mark

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Mark Leyner, 1956–, American writer, b. Jersey City, N.J. His hyperliterate postmodernist short stories, collected in I Smell Esther Williams (1983), My Cousin, My Gastroenterologist (1990), and Tooth Imprints on a Corn Dog (1995), and his absurdist novels. Et Tu, Babe (1992) and The Tetherballs of Bougainville (1997), established his reputation as a satirist and won him a cultlike following. Often writing about celebrity culture, Leyner himself became part of that culture with his television appearances and monthly magazine columns. After his 1997 book, Leyner wrote nonfiction pieces, a screenplay, and television shows and coauthored three books on medicine. In 2012 he returned to fiction with The Sugar Frosted Nutsack, a tour-de-force peopled with gods and mortals and filled with linguistic hoopla, allusion, and cleverness; it has been called his finest book.