Nell Zink’s debut novel follows wry protagonist Tiffany through a series of somewhat-depressing adulteries that ultimately prove her sweet-at-times marriage pretty much failed. Energetic, sexy, and absurdly funny enough to make you want to read it all in one sitting, yet filled with colloquialisms so perfectly worded and so apparently well researched environmental-activism-wise you’ll want to savor all 193 pages.
Eco-terrorism, infidelity, drugs, anal sex, bird-watching. Unhinged and all the more fun for it.
Fiction. Who is Nell Zink? She claims to be an expatriate living in northeast Germany. Maybe she is; maybe she isn't. I don't know. I do know that this first novel arrives with a voice that is fully formed: mature, hilarious, terrifyingly intelligent, and wicked. The novel is about a bird-loving American couple that moves to Europe and becomes, basically, eco-terrorists. This is strange, and interesting, but in between is some writing about marriage, love, fidelity, Europe, and saving the earth that is as funny and as grown-up as anything I've read in years. And there are some jokes in here that a young Don DeLillo would kill to have written. I hope he doesn't kill Nell Zink.--Keith Gessen
Nell Zink is a writer of extraordinary talent and range. Her work insistently raises the possibility that the world is larger and stranger than the world you think you know. You might not want to believe this, but her sentences and stories are so strong and convincing that you'll have no choice.--Jonathan Franzen.