"It is the summer of 1914. As the world teeters on the brink of the Great War, a callow American painter, Francis Wyndham, arrives at a renowned European insane asylum, where he begins offering art therapy under the auspices of Alessandro Caligari - sinister psychiatrist, maniacal artist, alleged sorcerer. Determined to turn the impending cataclysm to his financial advantage, Dr. Caligari will -- for a price -- allow governments to parade their troops past his masterpiece: a painting so mesmerizing it can incite entire regiments to rush headlong into battle. As the doctor's outrageous scheme becomes a reality, Francis joins with his brilliant, spider-obsessed student, Ilona Wessels, and a band of lunatic saboteaurs to thwart the mercenary magic. By radically reimagining the most famous of all German Expressionist silent films, satirist James Morrow has wrought a timely tale that is by turns funny and erotic, tender and bayonet-sharp - but ultimately, The Asylum of Dr. Caligari emerges as a love letter to that mysterious, indispensible thing called art." -- back cover.