cover image The Great Glass Sea

The Great Glass Sea

Josh Weil. Grove, $26 (480p) ISBN 978-0-8021-2215-5

Twin brothers find themselves on opposite sides of an ideological divide in this ambitious debut novel from the author of the novella collection The New Valley. Yarik and Dima grew up together in Russia, thick as thieves. As adults, they work at the Oranzheria, a massive greenhouse in the town of Petroplavilsk, which is bathed in perpetual daylight by space mirrors. Under the mirrors, the town becomes ceaselessly productive, a place where “sleep was freed from nature’s hours, breakfast was what happened before work,” and “stores never closed.” Longing for more time with his brother, Dima becomes increasingly disenchanted with this new, overly productive society, while an encounter between Yarik and Russian billionaire Boris Bazarov—the oligarch behind the Oranzheria—leads to the Yarik’s ascension through the ranks. A well-timed dystopian tale, the novel beautifully details both the politics of this hypothetical Russia—“oligarchs bred beneath the clamp of communism let loose upon loot-fueled dreams”—and its impact on one small family. Agent: P.J. Mark, Janklow & Nesbit. (July)