You Are Not A Stranger Here? by Adam Haslett
In one of the most acclaimed fiction debuts in years, Adam Haslett explores the lives that appear shuttered by loss and discovers entire worlds hidden inside them. An ageing inventor, burning with manic creativity, tries to reconcile with his estranged gay son. An orphaned boy draws a thuggish classmate into a relationship of escalating guilt and violence. A genteel middle-aged woman, a long-time resident of a rest home, becomes the confidante of a lovelorn, teenage volunteer. With Checkovian restraint and compassion, conveying both the sorrow of life and the courage with which people rise to meet it, You Are Not A Stranger Here is a triumph.