Steve Erickson is both criminally underrated and one of my favorite writers - his newest novel continues his streak of writing expansive stories that defy easy categorization. In Shadowbahn, the World Trade Center mysteriously appears overnight in the South Dakota Badlands 20 years after the towers were destroyed, a brother and sister from L.A. drive across the USA where the states are no longer unified, and Elvis Presley's stillborn twin Jesse wakes up in an alternate timeline in which he survived and Elvis died at birth. Shadowbahn is strange and somewhat overwhelming, but in a good way - it's combination of history, fractured timelines, fractured politics, family and the unexplained are tied together through Erickson's love of 20th century music. Incredibly relevant when looking at our own political reality, if you've read Steve Erickson before you know what to expect, and if you haven't then I encourage you to give him a try.
A LA TIMES' BEST BOOK OF 2017 (FICTION) "A beautiful, moving, strange examination of apocalypse and rebirth." - Neil Gaiman "Erickson has mobilized so much of what feels pressing and urgent about the fractured state of the country in a way that feels fresh and not entirely hopeless, if only because the exercise of art in opposition to complacent thought can never be hopeless." - New York Times Book Review
A chronicle of a weird road trip, a provocative work of alternative history, and a dazzling discography of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, encompassing artists from Louis Armstrong and Billie Holliday to Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, SHADOWBAHN is a richly allusive meditation on the meaning of American identity and of America itself. "Jaw-dropping," says Jonathan Lethem (Granta).
About the Author
Steve Erickson is the author of nine other novels (including Zeroville, Our Ecstatic Days, and These Dreams of You) and two nonfiction books that have been published in ten languages. His work has appeared in numerous periodicals, such as Esquire, Rolling Stone, Smithsonian, American Prospect, and Los Angeles, for which he writes regularly about film, music, and television. Erickson is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and the Lannan Lifetime Achievement Award. Currently he teaches at the University of California, Riverside.