Jonathan Lethem, The Fortress of Solitude (Doubleday 2003) Jonathan Lethem has made a reputation for himself by writing fiction deeply rooted in genre, whether that stylistic hook be the dystopian science fiction of Amnesia Moon and many of his short stories, or the hard-boiled noir of Gun With Occasional Music.
At least in the metaphorical sense, Jim Shepard does not look good on paper. Consider the synopses of some of his recent stories: a family history related through a series of the old Mars Attacks cards; an imagining of the Creature from the Black Lagoons last moments, as told by the swamp thing itself; a slice of life, from The Whos glory days, as recounted by John Entwhistle.
Like another grand dissection of American dreaming, The Great Gatsby, Jay Cantors recent novel takes place in that moneyed compound of privilege, Great Neck, Long Island (aka Fitzgeralds "East Egg"). Unlike Fitzgeralds titular romantic, the wealthy denizens of Cantors novel do not chase the orgiastic green light of the future, and instead find themselves all too willing to be borne ceaselessly into the past.