Book 2: Gold Fame Citrus by Claire Vaye Watkins

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.

Author: adamgartrell

Political journalist drowning in books

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