Monday, July 2, 2018

The Nix

The Nix by Nathan Hill  625 pp.

According to this story, a Nix is a Norwegian house spirit who attaches itself to a person and follows them for life. It seems that Samuel Andresen-Anderson has more than one. There is his mother who left when he was a child but returns to his life after "attacking" a presidential candidate. There is the girl he fell in love with at first sight. And there is the disturbed friend who he could not save. This story of a writer whose life is falling apart in the present. There are flashes back to his childhood and to his mother's life in 1968 to provide the backstory of how he ended up in his current state. And there are the characters in the story, lots of them. Samuel's gamer friends, his mother's college friends, his father, his grandfather who tells a different story about his mother, his mother's lawyer, a vindictive cop turned lawyer and judge, the student who wants to get Samuel fired from his teaching position, the publisher who plans to sue him, the beautiful violinist, the childhood friend hiding a terrible secret, etc. There is the main story and then the side stories that all seem to connect in a myriad of ways. In spite of being invested in the story, I kept thinking "Is this ever going to end?" 

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