Ivyland, narrated with ironic good cheer by Christa Lewis, is a sprawling science fiction story with a wild and inventive structure set in a drugged-out New Jersey in the near dystopian future.
The ominous tale involves an evil pharmaceutical company, a corrupt government, aborted space missions, cults, a deadly plague, and substance abuse; lots and lots of substance abuse.
Ivyland walks the fine line between comedy and tragedy and is a worst-case scenario for where America may be headed. Think Infinite Jest meets Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas meets Brave New World.
It's spring in Ivyland... Debut novelist Miles Klee takes a landscape of drugs, decay, loss and, perhaps, hope, and manages to make the ensemble wryly funny: something only a few notable contemporaries such as Jeff Vandermeer and Michael Chabon have been able to do. Post-urban New Jersey is instantly recognizable in this interlinked series of short vignettes... and Lev's living room is puddles of water and sun, and a bunch of those furry caterpillars are hauling themselves from surface to surface.
Populated by a bumbling, murderous citizenry of corrupt cops, innocents, ravenous addicts, lovesick geniuses, and cynical adventurers, Ivyland operates in the shadow of a giant pharmaceutical corporation that thrives on people's weaknesses... and may have an even more sinister agenda. It's our world, only a bit more extreme, and lovingly, precisely depicted with the adept skills native to a master of dark humor.
I'm not sure why the narrator is a woman when the main characters are men. I found it confusing that the narrator was the same when the main character changed in each chapter.
It was hard to follow.
The writer likes to be vague and do a slow reveal of details which makes it difficult to get into the story.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful