matthue music and poetry mp3s, and stuff

Just so you know:

All books come signed (I'll usually try to write or draw something random). If you'd rather get your copy unsigned, or with just a signature and nothing else, please make a note when you buy it or send me an email. Also drop a note if you'd like a special inscription.

All prices for shipping are U.S. only. If you want anything shipped to another country, just write me and ask. And all orders come with free stuff -- stickers, music, whatever I have lying around. If you order multiple items, just change the shipping total to $1 for each item after the first. Don't worry! The more stuff you order, the more goodies I'll throw in.


rules of my best friend's body
2017 free

16-year-old Arty has a crush on his best friend. Then, on the night that Arty's about to share his true feelings, a mutual friend attacks Larissa in the most shocking way. Read more about it here.

{ buy a paper copy } { read it online } { download for kindle } { download for ibooks & google books } { download a pdf }

the gobblings

2015, illustrated by rohan daniel eason
hardcover $19

From the author and illustrator of the "eerie and imaginative" (The New Yorker) picture book My First Kafka comes a beautiful, sad, funny original story in full color. Herbie's parents forced him to move to a space station in the middle of nowhere. But when Herbie pokes around in the station's secret passages, he finds a cabal of monsters who may have been best left untouched. The Gobblings is a dazzling, glistening after-storm spiderweb about the difference between being a hero and being a friend.

free: order The Gobblings from me directly and get a bonus mini book, Alien!

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🛸special offer! 🛸

the gobblings 5-pack
5 books for $80

U.S. shipping included

You've got friends. They've got kids. Buy five copies of Gobblings, save a lot of money, and you're all set for last-minute birthdays for a while. (Also, just specify if you'd like any of those to be copies of Kafka instead.)

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my first kafka

2013, illustrated by rohan daniel eason
hardcover $19

Runaway children who meet up with monsters. A giant talking bug. A secret world of mouse-people. The stories of Franz Kafka are wondrous and nightmarish, miraculous and scary. In My First Kafka, storyteller Matthue Roth and artist Rohan Daniel Eason adapt three Kafka stories into startling, creepy, fun stories for all ages. With My First Kafka, the master storyteller takes his rightful place alongside Maurice Sendak, Edward Gorey, and Lemony Snicket as a literary giant for all ages.

free: order My First Kafka from me directly and get the bonus minibook The Last Golem in Prague!

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2008 $9

[ official site ]

Jupiter Glazer’s parents emigrated from Russia when he was seven years old. Now, at 14, he’s feeling the burn. He doesn’t understand what he’s doing wrong -- why broom-closet rendezvouses with girls don’t seem to be happening, why his teachers can’t understand his English, and why he and his best friend Vadim can’t seem to fit in, either with the indie-music-obsessed Americans or the leather-jacket Russians kids at school.

Maybe it has to do with their X-Men addiction and their obsessive behavior reading the blogs of their classmates. Or maybe it has to do with life dealing Jupiter the worst hand of cards ever. He’s named after a dead Roman god, his hair is on permanent Jew-fro status, and his parents live in the only housing that the Federation could find them: the top floor of an industrial warehouse.

free: order Losers and get a bonus zine with an exclusive Jupiter story!

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candy in action

2007 $14

[ official site ]

Candy Cohen is just the girl next door -- if the girl next door happens to be a college freshman and part-time model with a wicked sense of humor. She and her best friend Velma jaunt around the world, flirting with rock stars and power brokers. All that changes one night, when Candy turns down a dinner invitation from the rich and powerful Preston Reign. Suddenly, she finds herself being stalked by a guy who never takes no for an answer. Drawn into his web, Candy is on the run. Dodging bullets, blowing up buildings, being chased through exotic cities, she fights back with the only weapons she has: her friends, her natural wit, and her stiletto heels. gave it a perfect score (5 stars) and said to "strap on your seatbelts for this book—you're in for quite a ride," and ForeWord Magazine compared Candy (favorably!) to Hermione from Harry Potter.

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candy in action: deluxe edition


includes hardcover book, original CD soundtrack, print of original artwork, and goodies

{ buy from me } out of stock

yom kippur a go-go

2005 $15 / $2.99 ebook

The actual-factual memoir. Yep, it's my first descent into talking about myself (aside from all those introspective phone calls when I was a teenager). A 20-year-old punk kid named Matthue leaves behind a promising career in boring office stuff to move to San Francisco, become a professional poet, and learn a little about relationships -- and a little bit about G*d -- by becoming an Orthodox Jew and joining a lesbian basketball league.

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never mind the goldbergs

2005 $8

Hava Aaronson is just your average teenage punk-rock Orthodox Jewish girl from New York. But when she's cast to star on a sitcom about your average Orthodox family, and moves to Hollywood for the summer, she's a fish out of water with one idea of what you're supposed to be on the screen, and quite another in real life. Bitch Magazine said, "Roth accomplishes the tricky task of explaining for a potentially uninformed readership both the personal and scriptural elements of Hava’s devotion, challenges, and dilemmas with great style and humor." It's been hailed as "vividly voiced" (Kirkus Reviews), "lively and unusual" (Children's Bookwatch), and Publisher's Weekly said that "readers will appreciate the look into Hava's modern Orthodox Jewish culture and beliefs."

    • an American Library Association Popular Paperback

    • a New York Public Library Best Book for the Teen Age

    • a Weekly Reader "Read to Succeed" book

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never mind the goldbergs: deluxe edition

includes hardcover book, original CD soundtrack, and goodies $17

{ buy from me } out of stock


What's a zine? Poems, stories, drawings, and a heckuva lot of elbow grease. These were the first books I ever made money off, sold when I was fresh out of college at poetry slams, bars, preschools, and anywhere they wouldn't throw me out of. In here are my first stories and my favorite stories. You can see where I'm coming from. And see where I stole the title "Yom Kippur a Go-Go" from.

Sometimes I throw stuff at this house.

2004 $5

Fresh off Def Poetry Jam and working next to a Xerox machine, I had a bunch of time on my hands. I put these poems together. Rounded out with some amazing clip art -- some by me and some that I stole off Fred Chao's bedroom floor -- and with a really sweet binding.

    1. Teeth

    2. Tremble with You [ read it ]

    3. 90210

    4. Nothing

    5. Hollywood Hills

    6. Between Girls

    7. Kosher Pizza Song

    8. Her Post-College Life

    9. F*cking G*d

    10. Snotty (The Winter Poem) [ listen to it ]

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Yom Kippur A Go-Go (the zine)

2002 $5

Totally not affiliated with the memoir, except the same kid wrote it. Eight poems (including a secret track about my grandmom) and a story, "Britney," about the world's most unlikely Bar Mitzvah tutor. With original illustrations by the author.

    1. New Year

    2. Hard

    3. Palestine [ read it ]

    4. Dreidel Maven [ listen to it ]

    5. Andy Warhol Love Song

    6. Hell (I Made the Devil Do It)

    7. Daughter

    8. Britney

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2001 $5

Short stories and poems, all of them from the early performances and Includes poems that reflect a sense of cheerful, apocalyptic irony ("Merger Mystery") and early Hasidic leanings ("Sequence"), plus the memoir "My Father, on the Radio" and fan favorite "Platonic (Sarah Michelle Gellar)" -- and a hidden track, of course.

    1. When We Tour Europe, Will You Dance in a Cage in Our Show?

    2. Merger Mystery

    3. Platonic (Sarah Michelle Gellar) [read it]

    4. Sequence

    5. Holidays and Rockets

    6. Amos's Graffiti Posse

    7. Ani'im Zemiros (God Drives an SUV)

    8. My Father, On the Radio

    9. Want Ads for Paradise

    10. My Cat Maceo

    11. Platonic (reprise)

    12. My Roommate Listens to the 1980s (secret track) [read it]

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2001 $4

20 post-it note poems, paper and ink in an intricate origami fold-out format. Includes "Why I Don't Date Poets," "Dreaming in Yiddish," and an exceedingly difficult-to-reach hidden track. 200 different covers with original art.

    1. Why I Don't Date Poets

    2. Murder Mystery

    3. Invitation

    4. Macrobiotic Hasid

    5. Rock Show

    6. Orthodox Girls' Names (English)*

    7. Wax Nostalgic

    8. Bananas (pts. 1 & 2)

    9. Forgetting

    10. Orthodox Girls' Names (Yiddish)**

    11. Music

    12. History

    13. This is how it ends

    14. Security Problems

    15. Hidden Track

    16. Dreaming in Yiddish

    17. High School

    18. Electric Guitar Haiku

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* — which for some reason isn't the actual poem; it's a totally separate poem I wrote out of only the names of Orthodox girls.

** — Also not a translation, it's just more names in Yiddish.


jews vs. aliens

edited by lavie tidhar & rebecca levene

This is such a great anthology. Naomi Alderman, Rachel Swirsky, Eric Kaplan and a bunch of other awesome authors pitch in great stories about, well, Jews and aliens.

For the longest time, Reb Chaim never got sick. When people asked for his secret, he said he did it so that he could serve G-d with all his facilities, that there was nothing worse than a half-done job. “No, really,” they’d say, “what’s your secret?”

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don't forget to write

edited by jennifer traig & dave eggers

A bunch of writers, artists, and random famous people (among them Dave Eggers, Sarah Vowell, Jon Scieszka and Aimee Bender) write real-world lesson plans. Mine is called "Word Karaoke: Become a Hip-Hop Lyrical Genius." All proceeds benefit free student programming at 826 Valencia. Update: Actually, they did an expanded second edition! I was also asked to write a piece about writing young adult novels. I used it as an excuse to merge Aristotle, Aristophanes, and Buffy.

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the autobiographer's handbook

edited by jennifer traig / intro by dave eggers

How do you write a memoir? This book is a roundtable discussion between 41 authors—among them Frank McCourt, the Eat, Pray, Love person, and me—about how to write your life story. You can read Dave Eggers' introduction here.

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living jewishly: a snapshot of a generation

edited by stefanie pervos bregman

A collection of personal essays and memoirs from Jewish 20- and 30-somethings from across the country. Each contributor brings a unique perspective as they tell their self-defining Jewish story. In my essay, "Shomer Negiah in the City," I guess I tackle the conflicted and sometimes hypocritical nature of the modern Orthodox dating world.

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cornered: stories of bullying & defiance

edited by rhoda belleza

After my novel Losers sort of unexpectedly became a hit in the burgeoning subgenre of Books About Nerdy Kids That Get Beat Up, this anthology was announced, and the editor kindly reached out to me and asked if I had any more stories of bullying. It just so happened that I was in the middle of writing a sequel to Losers, and there was this one chapter that fit really well.

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truth & dare

edited by liz miles

Like Cornered, this is another story about Jupiter Glazer from Losers. His dad is drunk. He cuts school to deliver their rent check. He meets a girl. More things happen, probably more surprises than I have any right squeezing into 14 pages, but you can find out yourself.

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dark things ii

edited by ty schwamberger

Embrace your dark side with this eclectic collection of horror stories. Murderers, haunted houses and a dabbling of the occult; devilish creatures, scuttling spiders and evil incarnate. Includes my story "Doubt."

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this is PUSH: new stories from the edge

edited by david levithan $8

Includes my story "The Waitress," which is actually half of the first chapter and half of the second chapter from my new PUSH novel, coming in late 2008....we still don't know what it's called. If you got an idea, please, PLEASE let me or David know. [Update: It's called Losers, and it's going to be amazing. David didn't like the title until he saw the final cover. And then he LOVED it.] And then there's 14 more stories from PUSH authors.

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democrat's soul

edited by the chicken soup for the soul people

An anthology of personal stories about the upcoming election. My story, "The Only Living Democrat in Brooklyn," has a misleading title, but I still like it. Mostly because it puts the song "Only Living White Boy in New York" in my head, and since Douglas Adams admitted that he wrote all his books with Paul Simon songs in his head, I've always hoped that, one day, a Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy might pop out of mine.

I don't live in what you'd call a neighborhood rich in Democrats.

As a matter of fact, my neighborhood isn’t one for local color at all—pretty much everyone dresses in black and white. You’d recognize it from movies, TV cop shows (usually with an undercover detective trying to blend in, always unsuccessfully) and even The Simpsons: this is the Hasidic part of Brooklyn, New York.

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edited by daphne gottlieb

Includes my story "Beating around the Burning Bush":

"I'm cheating on my girlfriend with G-d.

"I came home late last night, Friday night, still in my dress clothes from work. My clothes smelled of candlewax, sweetbread challa was on my breath. I felt the compulsion to buy a box of Tic-Tacs and swallow them all. The classic compulsion of cheating: as much as you try to cover up, you can never cover up enough."

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bottoms up

edited by diana cage

Includes my poem, "Waiting for the Man," which is a decidedly different version of the Hulk prancing around San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood than you'll find in the movie: She plants me against the wall, grinds my hand like coffee. Inside her there is fusion, nuclear fission and gamma radiation. I'm sandwiched between Michelle Tea, Daphne Gottlieb, and a whole bunch of awesome writers in this anthology edited by Diana Cage, editor of On Our Backs magazine.

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