No matter where you stand, a new Don DeLillo novel is an Event, and Zero K stands as the best of the author’s post-Underworld late period. There’s a tendency with great novelists to write about the same things, over and over, and DeLillo takes back up his preoccupations with language, technology, and death in this startling story about environmental devastation and life extension. And the sentences… the intense, penetrating DeLillo sentences are all here, now with a touch of Beckett to wax their warp. DeLillo turns 80 in November, and Zero K is still years ahead of the rest of us.— From Hal
New York Times Bestseller
A New York Times Notable Book The wisest, richest, funniest, and most moving novel in years from Don DeLillo, one of the great American novelists of our time--an ode to language, at the heart of our humanity, a meditation on death, and an embrace of life. Jeffrey Lockhart's father, Ross, is a billionaire in his sixties, with a younger wife, Artis Martineau, whose health is failing. Ross is the primary investor in a remote and secret compound where death is exquisitely controlled and bodies are preserved until a future time when biomedical advances and new technologies can return them to a life of transcendent promise. Jeff joins Ross and Artis at the compound to say "an uncertain farewell" to her as she surrenders her body. "We are born without choosing to be. Should we have to die in the same manner? Isn't it a human glory to refuse to accept a certain fate?" These are the questions that haunt the novel and its memorable characters, and it is Ross Lockhart, most particularly, who feels a deep need to enter another dimension and awake to a new world. For his son, this is indefensible. Jeff, the book's narrator, is committed to living, to experiencing "the mingled astonishments of our time, here, on earth." Don DeLillo's seductive, spectacularly observed and brilliant new novel weighs the darkness of the world--terrorism, floods, fires, famine, plague--against the beauty and humanity of everyday life; love, awe, "the intimate touch of earth and sun." Zero K is glorious.