In One Person by John Irving

In One Person: A Novel BY John Irving. Simon & Schuster. Hardcover, 448 pages. $28.
The cover of In One Person: A Novel

Late in John Irving's 13th novel, "In One Person," the narrator, an aging writer named William Abbott, recalls visiting a high school friend dying of AIDS. It's the early 1980s, the beginning of the AIDS crisis, and Irving evokes the deathly terrors of that period, a time when people seemed, literally, to evaporate, to become, in the words of the late David Wojnarowicz, "a dark smudge in the air that dissipates without notice … glass human[s] disappearing in rain."