Come West and See

Maxim Loskutoff. Norton, $25.95 (208p) ISBN 978-0-393-63558-4
Loskutoff sets his slightly disturbing debut collection in an alternate present during a new American Civil War led by libertarian Western separatists. As the rebellion in Montana hovers in the background, the author explores the motivations of those who sign up as well as those who become trapped in indecision. The media-shy widow of one of the first rebels to die tries to explain the cause to her children in “Daddy Swore an Oath.” Another mother in “We’re in This Together You Know, God” recounts the discovery of her daughter’s tormenting of the family’s horses. Socially awkward 20-something Derek frets over his snake’s loss of appetite and his only friend moving away in “Prey.” In “Umpqua,” Russ declares his support for the rebellion to obscure his inadequacy after sparks fly between his girlfriend and a strapping Midwestern tourist. And in “Harvest,” a former soldier and his dead comrade’s preteen daughter hide out from federal troops in an underground bunker, though his motivations are less protective than they seem. A persistent focus on sexuality narrows the range of relationships throughout. Nevertheless, Loskutoff’s collection presents a chilling glimpse into a plausible future of ravaged American disunion. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/26/2018
Release date: 05/01/2018
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 208 pages - 978-0-393-63559-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-68441-238-9
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-0-393-35701-1
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