Why We Love It:
It’s Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil meets Jonathan Franzen. While the whodunnit mystery will keep you guessing until the very last pages, it’s the dissection of small town American life that had us truly hooked – for all 600 pages.
At the very tip of Long Island, New York, lies a small town called Orient. It’s home to loyal year-rounders who protect their little hamlet like it’s the last bastion of community. But when 19-year-old runaway Mills Chevern is brought to town, his unwelcome presence coincides with a series of sinister, and possibly linked, murders. Year-rounders don’t like visitors, and now the town is being overrun by New York City arty types, but who stands to gain and lose the most in Orient?
Orient beautifully captures the angst, desperation, innocence and dark side of small town life. It’s the second novel by Christopher Bollen, who is also editor-at-large of New York’s famous ‘Interview’ magazine.
Bollen is a name we expect to be seeing on awards lists in the future. Orient has been compared to the work of Donna Tartt, Lionel Shriver and Jeffrey Eugenides… We welcome Bollen into a very revered group of writers indeed.
What the critics are saying about Orient:
‘A compelling novel of tragic suspense. Bollen has a gift for tightly drawn characters and an ominous sense of place‘ A.M Homes
‘The quaint seaside village of Orient is not as pleasant as it seems, and Christopher Bollen will hold you spellbound as he reveals its secrets. A truly well-crafted and literate murder mystery reminiscent of PD James, with a bit of a Twin Peaks thrown in.’ Nelson DeMille
‘Bollen excels at creating an atmosphere of Manhattan-specific dread, and certain scenes, particularly the account of a struggling actor’s going-away party, are tragicomic masterpieces.’ The New Yorker
‘Ambitious . . . a nervy debut illuminated by flashes of insight.’ The Wall Street Journal