Colton Valentine

  • Oblique Strategies

    IN JUSTIN TORRES’S NEW NOVELBlackouts, disorientation is a pleasure. You might wonder, at first, if you’re being duped by these characters or invited to share in their confusion. We’ll get to the reasons for that confusion, which is to say the plot, but plot is less the point than form and a nebulous atmosphere. Short chapters, shifting perspectives, and doctored photographs give the novel the air of an enigma to solve.

    Memory, in Blackouts, is both personal and cultural, and especially queer. It comes mediated by an older gay man, Juan, whom the unnamed narrator met ten years ago in a