PositiveLitReactorFrom page one I was invested in Lepucki's flawed characters, even though I would probably hate them in real life. You could say I was absorbed in their self-absorption.
Giorgio De Maria
RaveLitReactorThe Twenty Days of Turin is many things: a mystery, a cosmic horror story, and an allegory for domestic terrorism in 1970s Italy. It is also a prescient vision of the interconnected oversharing of the internet age, and, for this reader, perfectly illustrates how being inundated with a constant barrage of well-meaning but impotent opinions can desensitize the masses, allowing for the objects of their activism to run amok, unabated. A neat trick for a book originally published forty years ago. Some of the allegorical meaning might be lost on those unfamiliar with Turin's history, but for anyone with a computer living in the 21st Century, it is rife with eerily accurate commentary on our current situation. And that ending...god damn, the ending is creepy as hell. Hopefully the outlook of our own future is a little brighter and a lot less figuratively bludgeon-y.
PositiveLitReactorThis is an inventive, challenging, rewarding, and sometimes frustrating book, even by Erickson's standards. It is both preposterous and hilarious, marked by structural diversions, metaphysical flourishes, and long ruminations on 20th Century music. Nobody does what Erickson does. He is one of a kind. Also, I think he might be a wizard. I promised myself I'd never do this, but...Shadowbahn isn't the novel we deserve, it is the novel we need. The novel we need to Save American From Itself.
RaveLitReactor[Mohr is] the reason you read this book. If you've sampled any of his fiction you know the man can tell a story. This one just happens to be about himself. And it's a heart-breaker. The first book I read by Mohr was Damascus, back in 2011. According to his memoir, he was still struggling with his sobriety at the time. Naive me, I assumed he was all better, since he was a functioning novelist. But in reality, the struggle never ends, and it is Mohr's acceptance of that fact that infuses Sirens with melancholy, even as he navigates the unfamiliar territory of fatherhood. It's the type of brutal honesty that propels the reader forward, even though they are afraid to know the ending, one that most likely exists outside the confines of the book. Definitely pick this one up.
RaveLitReactorThe Warren is the kind of deliciously frustrating fiction I have come to expect from Evenson since I dove head-first into his oeuvre less than a year ago. I thought I could swim well, but man, I've been thrashing around like an idiot just trying to keep my head above water. That's not to say his work is confusing in its complexity—his writing is actually quite direct—it's just that it makes you unsure of yourself and your place in the world. For The Warren takes on nothing less than the nature of identity and what it means to be 'human' ... Evenson masterfully doles out just the right amount of information, and in doing so puts us on an even playing field with the protagonist—never above him—which would put us in the god-like position of observer, as opposed to participant.
RaveLitReactorA Collapse of Horses is the first of Evenson's books I have read. Since finishing it, I have read three more, in succession. That right there is a review in and of itself ... a new writer has been inducted into my pantheon of favorites.