April 29, 2013


I heard Chaz Brenchley read the beginning of DISPOSSESSION at FOGcon, and I knew I was going to have to buy the book so I could find out what happens next.

At the start of the novel, Jonty wakes up in a hospital and is surprised to discover that the woman cradling his aching head isn't the one he's loved and shared his life with for years but instead a complete stranger. His surprise turns to utter confusion when this mystery woman claims to be his wife.

Jonty soon discovers that he's been in an accident and lost all memory of the past three months of his life. They've apparently been busy ones. During this missing time, he's not only married a woman he can't remember, he's also become involved in a host of nefarious activities that make no sense with what he knows about himself. The story unfolds as a fascinating mystery in which a man investigates his own recent past.

I previous read the author's HOUSE OF DOORS and was impressed by the storytelling, so I had no doubt that DISPOSSESSION would be a satisfying read. Jonty's mystery becomes more puzzling the deeper he delves, with more strange factors coming into play, but by the end, all questions are answered. There's a good deal of graphic violence along the way, so this is not a story for everyone, but if you have the stomach for it, I recommend it.

Good Stuff Out There:

→ Lydia Netzer looks at the backlash against literary fiction: "I read a lot of books last year including scifi, historical, 19th century, memoir, and yes nonfiction and even instruction manuals. My favorite books were the ones I could preface with this much-maligned and apparently dangerous adjective 'literary.' Literary scifi yes please! Literary historical thank you! Literary southern hello! 'Literary memoir' tells me this is not a celebrity tell-all or political expose. 'Literary thriller' tells me I can enjoy my sentences while I scramble through a plot."


laurenhat said...

Ooh, sounds very cool! Do you have it on Kindle or might I borrow a hard copy?

I have an instinctive cringe when I hear something described as "literary" that I've been working to get over. Because I like a whole lot of books in that genre! But still, I admit that some of my first associations with that term are boring/pretentious/slow-paced/pointless. I have other unfairly stereotypical genre associations, too -- sci-fi & fantasy are by no means always exciting, innovative, and fast-paced -- but most of them are less likely to make me hesitate before trying a book.

Lisa Eckstein said...

DISPOSSESSION is mainly available as an ebook right now -- it was first published in the mid-90s (and contains some amusingly old-school computer technology as a result) and was recently re-released digitally.

I'm interested by the whole discussion about what "literary" means and whether it's a genre or a style or what. Like Lydia Netzer, I prefer to consider it a descriptor that can be applied to books with any category of plot that are written with a certain focus on and richness of language. Under this definition, the majority of my favorite books would qualify as literary. But like you, I sometimes anticipate that a novel described as "literary" will have _too much_ language for my taste, and that's not always fair. It's a tricky subject.

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