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The New Yorker: "Erickson’s skillful use of metafictional techniques, coincidences, and resonances expands the story into an absorbing meditation on narrative itself."

Date: Mar 26 2012

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These Dreams of You, by Steve Erickson (Europa). Set against the 2008 election of Barack Obama and the concurrent unraveling of the economy, this ruminative novel takes in the slowly disintegrating lives of a bohemian California family. An unemployed professor and former novelist finds himself ineffectually resisting bankruptcy and foreclosure; his wife becomes obsessed with finding their adopted Ethiopian daughter’s natural mother, who may be alive and in trouble. As the family travels from Los Angeles to London, Addis Ababa, and Berlin, Erickson deftly weaves a larger tale that reaches back to the nineteen-sixties, and an earlier, equally transformative Presidential candidacy. The characters’ bumbling attempts to save themselves and others make them both charming and infuriating, while Erickson’s skillful use of metafictional techniques, coincidences, and resonances expands the story into an absorbing meditation on narrative itself.