Banks, Russell

Lost Memory of Skin by Russell BanksLost Memory of Skin (2011)
BookList: /* Starred Review */ Banks is in top form in his seventeenth work of fiction, a cyclonic novel of arresting observations, muscular beauty, and disquieting concerns. An unloved runt of 22, the Kid thinks he might be “slightly retarded,” but his narrational voice evinces a smart, sensitive, and witty, if dangerously uneducated, mind. With only a pet iguana for a friend, the Kid became addicted to online pornography, which leads to his becoming a virginal convicted sex offender on parole, camping out beneath a causeway at the water’s edge in a city much like Miami. The Kid joins a veritable leper colony of sex offenders rendered homeless due to a law forbidding them to live within 2,500 feet of any place children may gather. Enter the Professor, a sociologist whose gargantuan mental powers are matched by his astonishing bulk. Humongous, arrogant, generous, brash, and secretive, the Professor, a character of startling and magnetic originality, latches onto the Kid first as a case study, then as an ally, until things go catastrophically wrong. Banks dramatically contrasts the soulless cybersexual carnival with the thorny complexity of flesh-and-blood encounters and our inner lives, the fecund wildness of a vast primeval swamp, and the fury of a hurricane to create a commanding, intrepidly inquisitive, magnificently compassionate, and darkly funny novel of private and societal illusions, maladies, and truths. -- Seaman, Donna (Reviewed 06-01-2011) (Booklist, vol 107, number 19, p36)

Russell Banks

Learn more about Russell Banks

Check out more General Fiction books set in Florida.

Visit It Takes Place in Florida and discover more books with a Florida setting.

More pages