This strange and compelling plot features Chaon’s signature imaginative flair and brilliant pacing to create an ominous tension infused with sly wit. Chaon expertly provides vague science fictional notes that imply a slightly futuristic, dystopian setting that further amplifies intrigue. Oblique references to animal experimentation and devastating climate disasters add a chilling tone, but is it the emotional verisimilitude that provides heft. Will Bear is a tender mercenary, a microdosing Big Lebowski whose off-the-grid life parallels his disconnection from humanity. A consummate storyteller, Chaon imbues the darkly comic with colossal heart.
Despite the sordidness of his life and past, Will is a highly likable protagonist as he seeks a degree of redemption through his growing love for his possible daughter. A dark but appealing adventure of a man coming into himself after a lifetime avoiding identity.
... thrilling and funny ... The moving (and often hilarious) quest to find out who Cammie is and what she means to Will gives this a big beating heart, as does Flip, whose own post-traumatic stress is aggravated by thunder, fireworks, and tequila. As ever, Chaon expertly fuses the dystopian nightmares of technology and crime with fascinating characters who cross a hellscape to find each other. This is his best one yet.