“In Jonathan Lethem’s wryly funny second novel, we meet a young man named Chaos, who’s living in a movie theater in post-apocalyptic Wyoming, drinking alcohol, and eating food out of cans.
It’s an unusual and at times unbearable existence, but Chaos soon discovers that his post-nuclear reality may have no connection to the truth. So he takes to the road with a girl named Melinda in order to find answers. As the pair travels through the United States they find that, while each town has been affected differently by the mysterious source of the apocalypse, none of the people they meet can fill in their incomplete memories or answer their questions. Gradually, figures from Chaos’s past, including some who appear only under the influence of intravenously administered drugs, make Chaos remember some of his forgotten life as a man named Moon.”-Goodreads Synopsis
Amnesia Moon Review
Have you ever read one of those books that suddenly went so far in the direction you weren’t expected that you had no idea – NONE- how you were going to review it? Like, the book started off all normal, but by the end of it you were left staring blankly ahead, thinking to yourself “What the hell did I just read?”
Well... What the hell did I just read???
Its an interesting premise, and at least the first half of it is very definitely a great, unique read that I thoroughly enjoyed. Now, I enjoyed the second half too, but it definitely got very strange, very quickly. Especially the last fourth of the book. When talking about it with one of my book reviewer friends, I described it as “Well, that just took a left turn at Albuquerque!” I am still speechless and having trouble putting thoughts together.
I have a feeling if you read this book while so intoxicated you could barely see straight, it would make perfect sense, and maybe even be a bit profound.
See, at first this guy’s journey makes perfect sense. The world around him is twisted, but you’re very able to accept that. He has a companion, he sets off on your typical post-apocalyptic “find a way/find yourself trip” but then things just start to get more and more weird. Like, you can’t even pinpoint exactly when it crosses the point from “strange” to “WTHDIJR”, he slips you into it so subtly.
Ooh, he’s good. He’s very, very good. By the time the main character’s journey has come full-circle, I don’t think there’s anything Mr. Lethem could write that you wouldn’t just sort of nod your head to, and quietly accept, even while your brain cells cry out as they get twisted into insanity inside your head.
I recommend this book. I caution you to maybe have adult beverages at the ready, though.