The Impossible Fortress

“A love letter to the 1980s, adolescence, technology, nerd-dom, and Vanna White, The Impossible Fortress will make you laugh and remind you of how much is possible when you’re fourteen.”

—DAVID EBERSHOFF, bestselling author of The Danish Girl

A trio of awkward teen boys... and one brilliant geek girl with a shattering secret.

An unexpected romance born on 8-bit computers and 5¼-inch floppy disks.

A daring and dangerous heist to steal the May 1987 issue of Playboy Magazine, featuring scandalous photographs of Wheel of Fortune hostess Vanna White.

All of these elements collide in The Impossible Fortress, a coming-of- age crime caper that explores the timeless and ever-confusing realities of male adolescence. Jason Rekulak’s hilarious debut novel offers a nostalgic celebration of old-school computer programming, 1980s pop culture, and the last great days of Life Before the Internet.

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“Part love story, part coming-of-age tale, and part heist picture, The Impossible Fortress is an endlessly clever novel about friendship, heartache and computers—all rendered with the bright colors and buoyant spirit of Q*bert for the Commodore 64.”

—Ben H. Winters, author of the Edgar-award winning Last Policeman trilogy, and Underground Airlines

“A charmingly vintage take on geek love... Rekulak’s novel will have readers of a certain age waxing nostalgic about Space Invaders and humming Hall and Oates, but it's a fun ride that will appeal to all.”

Publisher's Weekly

The Impossible Fortress is hilarious, compulsively readable, and surprisingly poignant, a caper novel set in a time when U2 could still be considered a one-hit wonder. I absolutely loved it!”

—Carolyn Parkhurst, New York Times bestselling author of The Dogs of Babel and Harmony

“I absolutely love this charming and optimistic coming-of-age tale about making video games for love, not money.”

—Dona Bailey, Atari programmer of the arcade game Centipede

“An unexpected retro delight.”

Booklist (Starred Review)

Play the Game


In The Impossible Fortress, Will Marvin & Mary Zelinksy create a Commodore 64 game called “The Impossible Fortress.” Indie developers Holy Wow Studios have created a web game that mirrors the one found in the novel.

— PLAY IT NOW —

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2/7/2017. READY. RUN