Heads You Lose

Lisa Lutz and David Hayward, Putnam, $24.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-399-15740-0
In this experimental California improv, Lutz (The Spellman Files) writes odd-numbered chapters and footnoted barbs directed at her coauthor and ex-boyfriend, poet Hayward, whose even-numbered chapters and stiletto-sharp ripostes add a freaky dimension to the collaboration. Grown siblings Lacey and Paul Hansen are scratching out a precarious living from a Northern California clandestine marijuana operation when a reeking headless human body turns up in their backyard, eventually identified as Hart Drexel, detecting barista Lacey's former lover. Because Lutz and Hayward agreed not to discuss or to undo a plot development the other had produced, they create a jittery black-comic narrative complicated by inter-author tensions unveiled in memos exchanged at the end of each chapter. Shifty secondary characters, some charming, some odious, pop in and out of the resulting dizzying plot that comes off like a trendy Left Coast restaurant mélange—daringly composed, exotic to contemplate. Author tour. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/14/2011
Release date: 04/01/2011
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 300 pages - 978-0-425-24684-9
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-101-48652-8
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-101-48528-6
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