Gold Fame Citrus has quite a bit in common with my previous selection, The Natural Way of Things.
Both are women-led stories set in dry, dystopian wastelands – in this case a drought-ravaged near-future American west – where men are doing very bad things.
And again, I’m inclined to compare this to Margaret Atwood – although perhaps that only betrays a limited frame of reference on my part for female genre fiction.
At any rate, it’s a solid debut from the 31-year-old American. It’s a fresh take on post-apocalyptica that avoids the typical story-beats and cliches of the genre with an idiosyncratic – sometimes eccentric – approach to form and language.
Watkins is guilty of a few overly self-conscious stylistic flourishes that hinder rather than help the story but there’s always just enough plot to bring things back into focus.
Next: A debut novel from another American woman.