The Flamethrowers, by Rachel Kushner

Harvill Secker

By Martin Herbert

The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner (Harvill Secker)

The Flamethrowers, which unites scenes from a somnolent, insular artworld with episodes of bomb-flinging struggle against inequality, is only nominally concerned with mid-1970s America and Italy. It’s clear that Rachel Kushner, the Los Angeles-based writer and critic whose outstanding second novel this is, is also talking (or, really, asking) about today: what’s at stake and what might be possible in art, life and their mythic overlap.The book’s heroine, known as ‘Reno’ for her Nevada hometown – the first of many…

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