I want you to scroll back up and look at that book cover again. 1. The title is Gun, With Occasional Music. 2. There’s a baby with some crazy steampunk head gear. 3. Kangaroo in a suit. How was I supposed to leave this book at the library book sale? Impossible.
As it turns out, it’s a detective story. Not only that, it was the kind of private eye story I love! The whole time I was reading, I was envisioning Conrad Metcalf in black and white with strips of light coming through blinds obscuring his handsome face. I was also excited that I didn’t figure out the whodunit part on my own. The ending was shocking but completely obvious when Metcalf explains it. I wanted to kick myself in the face because I didn’t see it before, which is exactly what I want from a mystery.
This novel was so cool; it was that old school private eye story set in a futuristic version of society. Seriously amazing! It had the perfect vibe, and it introduced so many interesting aspects for future human society. Honestly, it seemed like the moment before a society becomes a dystopia. Instead of reading the dystopia, you get a microscopic exploration of why it happens.
I also loved the writing itself. Jonathan Lethem is a talented writer. Before I even finished the novel, I was looking for what the author had coming next because the book said it was a great first novel. As it turns out, the book is old, and the author has already written several more books. I will definitely be reading some, if not all, of them.