cover image The Time Has Come

The Time Has Come

Will Leitch. Harper, $30 (304p) ISBN 978-0-06-323851-0

Leitch’s engaging latest (after How Lucky) follows a group of people caught up in a mass shooting in Athens, Ga. Among the cast is Theo Lindbergh, who recently inherited the town’s pharmacy, and his customers: a middle-aged widow, a gruff but loving high school sports coach and his teenage son, a socially conscious young lawyer, a recovering alcoholic trying to keep his act together, and a military veteran employed as a hospital nurse. Their paths all converge one day at Lindbergh’s when Tina Lamm, an elementary school teacher, shows up with a pair of pistols, unhinged psychologically by a string of personal misfortunes. For reasons not made entirely clear, Tina is convinced something bad has been going on at Lindbergh’s and has taken it upon herself to set things right. Leitch’s panoramic narrative hopscotches back and forth between the viewpoints of his characters as they go about their daily routines, oblivious to their impending fates. Leitch brings a Chekhovian economy to the storytelling—Tina’s guns are mentioned in the first act, and they indeed go off before it’s all over—but his emphasis is on the humanity of all involved. It’s an all-too-plausible slice of life. Agent: David Gernert, Gernert Company. (May)