My rating: 5 of 5 stars
As a first novel, Anthony Marra's Constellation of Vital Phenomena is a stunner. It gives me faith that wonderful writers are emerging daily. Marra sets this work in Chechnya, and his character's lives intertwine in time and space to paint a portrait of life in this former Soviet Republic as it disintegrates over a period of 8 years. The novel is brutal, haunting, and thought provoking. The writing is eminently readable and loaded with remarkably fresh imagery, historical accuracy, and the promise of similar works to come.
That this work hasn't received more critical acclaim is as unfathomable as the way human beings are treated between the pages of what will surely become a major work of fiction.
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