February 25, 2010
Await Your Reply
Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon
2009 Ballantine Books
Quit on 2/16/10
The lives of three strangers interconnect in unforeseen ways—and with unexpected consequences—in acclaimed author Dan Chaon’s gripping, brilliantly written new novel.
Longing to get on with his life, Miles Cheshire nevertheless can’t stop searching for his troubled twin brother, Hayden, who has been missing for ten years. Hayden has covered his tracks skillfully, moving stealthily from place to place, managing along the way to hold down various jobs and seem, to the people he meets, entirely normal. But some version of the truth is always concealed.
A few days after graduating from high school, Lucy Lattimore sneaks away from the small town of Pompey, Ohio, with her charismatic former history teacher. They arrive in Nebraska, in the middle of nowhere, at a long-deserted motel next to a dried-up reservoir, to figure out the next move on their path to a new life. But soon Lucy begins to feel quietly uneasy.
My whole life is a lie, thinks Ryan Schuyler, who has recently learned some shocking news. In response, he walks off the Northwestern University campus, hops on a bus, and breaks loose from his existence, which suddenly seems abstract and tenuous. Presumed dead, Ryan decides to remake himself—through unconventional and precarious means.
I've never read anything by Chaon, but a friend recommended this book, so I thought I'd give it a try. I took it with me to the courthouse while on jury duty last week and had plenty of quiet time to get started. Unfortunately, after 30+ pages, I decided to call it quits. Neither of the three disparate characters or their plights captured my attention. After reading the reviews on Amazon, I have no second thoughts about trying again. This one's not for moi!