A taut, psychological mind-bender from the bestselling author of I’m Thinking of Ending Things.
We don’t get visitors. Not out here. We never have.
In Iain Reid’s second haunting, philosophical puzzle of a novel, set in the near-future, Junior and Henrietta live a comfortable, solitary life on their farm, far from the city lights, but in close quarters with each other. One day, a stranger from the city arrives with alarming news: Junior has been randomly selected to travel far away from the farm...very far away. The most unusual part? Arrangements have already been made so that when he leaves, Henrietta won't have a chance to miss him, because she won't be left alone—not even for a moment. Henrietta will have company. Familiar company.
Told in Reid’s sharp and evocative style, Foe examines the nature of domestic relationships, self-determination, and what it means to be (or not to be) a person. An eerily entrancing page-turner, it churns with unease and suspense from the first words to its shocking finale.
In the beginning of the latest nerve-wracking novel from Reid (I'm Thinking of Ending Things), Junior and Henrietta lead a peaceful, solitary life on their farm in the near future. They wake up, drink coffee, go to work, and come home. Sometimes Henrietta plays the piano they found in their house. All of that is interrupted one day by the arrival of the mysterious Terrance, sent on behalf of the space research organization OuterMore to inform Junior he's been longlisted in a lottery for a temporary resettlement expedition into space called the Installation. Junior never applied for the program, and Terrance's appearance knocks them off-kilter, but Junior and Henrietta are able to eventually put it out of their minds that is, until Terrance returns two years later to congratulate Junior on being selected for the Installation. When Junior expresses worries about being separated from Henrietta and leaving her alone, Terrance unveils the other side of the plan: while Junior is in space, a synthetic duplicate will come to take his place, working his job and keeping Henrietta company. In order to collect data for this duplicate, Terrance moves in with Junior and Henrietta, but as the days go on, Junior starts to believe there is something more sinister at play that Terrance is not telling him. Though the ending falls a little short, Reid proves once again that he is a master of atmosphere and suspense. Readers won't be able to put this one down.
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A Truly Great Book!
I’m so happy to have stumbled upon this author. He is a breath of fresh air from the usual suspects who churn out the same old tales. I read A LOT & the mystery/psychological/thriller genre has become so generic: missing children, spouses, indistinguishable detectives/FBI profilers, kidnappers, etc. Pedantic writing is rampant in so many books these days. No real challenges or twists to stimulate thought. Mr. Reid is the opposite of such books. If you’ve not read “I’m Thinking of Ending Things,” I highly suggest it. Also, if you like Mr. Reid’s writing style, check out Dan Chaon.