California by Edan Lepucki

Buzz was building for Edan Lepucki’s debut novel, California, even before Stephen Colbert championed it on The Colbert Report as one of the excellent titles affected by ongoing negotiations between Hachette Book Group and Amazon. Readers will be pleased to discover that Colbert’s recommendation is not without merit.

California is a sweeping vision of a country radically transformed by the everyday news items we casually dismiss. Cal and Frida are an idealistic young couple whose efforts to live off the grid, and on the land come to a grinding halt when they discover Frida’s pregnancy. Unsettled by recent ominous signs, they decide to go in search of a community, both for protection and for aid in preparing for the birth of their child. What they find on their journey rocks them to their core and changes what they thought they understood about civilization and themselves. Lepucki’s novel explores the tensions and reinvention of family bonds and marital relations and loyalty against the shiftiness of an uncertain world.

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