Hari Kunzru has put together a series of interrelated stories, scattered across time, centered about the Pinnacles, now a national monument, but over the centuries also a nexus of mystic/cosmic/UFO mojo. His telling of these stories evokes a wide variety of iconic situations–the realism of the recent past, the coyote stories of Native American myth, the sad horror of a utopian community degenerating into a cult, the apocalyptic hallucination of lost Mormon explorers.
In other words, we’re in David Mitchell’s territory, or Thomas Pynchon’s–insanely amibtious literary excursions that hint at deep connections which are never quite spelled out.
Good stuff, but not in Mitchell class, or Pynchon’s. For one thing, the longest story, presented in several sections, is probably the least interesting. It tells of a couple struggling to raise a severely autistic child, whose lives get much worse when he vanishes. They suffer. They suffer more. Then something wonderful happens, that may also be very creepy.
Good enough that I’ll keep an eye on Kunzru’s future work. Not good enough that I’ll track down everything he’s already written.