Told in spurts and seemingly scatterbrained, an author who has been working on an expansive book for many years as a follow up to a bestseller is now trying to piece his life back together after a severe head trauma. He reveals what he can in fragments gleaned from a hidden thumb drive. Not certain of his own identity, he must rely on what he is told by others. The text is interspersed with a mix of film stills, HTML code, and partially blacked-out and blank pages which force you to linger on the last thought or slowly marinate on the current one before delving deeper. This beast of a novel moves at a rapid pace making it very hard to put down. -Allen— From Fall Booknotes 2017
Funny, highly inventive, and deeply moving, theMystery.doc is a vast, shapeshifting literary novel that reads like a page-turner. It's a comedy, a tragedy, a big book about America. It's unlike anything you've read before. Rooted in the western United States in the decade post-9/11, the book follows a young writer and his wife as he attempts to write the follow-up to his first novel, searching for a form that will express the world as it has become, even as it continually shifts all around him. Pop-up ads, search results, web chats, snippets of conversation, lines of code, and film and television stills mix with alchemical manuscripts, classical works of literature--and the story of a man who wakes up one morning without any memory of who he is, his only clue a single blank document on his computer called themystery.doc. From text messages to The Divine Comedy, first love to artificial intelligence, the book explores what makes us human--the stories we tell, the memories we hold on to, the memories we lose--and the relationships that give our lives meaning. Part love story, part memoir, part documentary, part existential whodunit, theMystery.doc is a modern epic about the quest to find something lasting in a world where everything--and everyone--is in danger of slipping away.
About the Author
Matthew McIntosh is the author of the Los Angeles Times bestseller Well. He lives with his wife on the West Coast.