(Harper Perennial, March) by Nick Arvin
Denver author Nick Arvin’s third book explores how a tragic past influences the present. Ellis Barstow is a floundering, out-of-work engineer haunted by a car crash that killed his half-brother a decade ago. A chance run-in with his brother’s former (now married) girlfriend sets in motion a career change—to a traffic accident reconstructionist—and an illicit affair that spurs a desperate missing-persons hunt. Arvin weaves vivid detail with gritty, poetic prose to present a gripping and somber vision of what it takes to pick up the pieces and rebuild after utter devastation.