Lost in Arcadia
By: Sean Gandert
Publication Date: 2017-07-01
Number of pages: 412
“Prescient, funny, smart, a story to disappear into and come out the other side.” —Alexander Chee, author of The Queen of the Night
“A fascinating and ambitious first novel by a very talented writer.…An indispensable read.” —Rudolfo Anaya, author of Bless Me, Ultima
The America of 2037 is a country distracted by, infatuated with, and addicted to Arcadia. The brainchild of reclusive genius Juan Diego Reyes, Arcadia is a wickedly immersive, all-encompassing social-media platform and virtual-reality interface. Although Arcadia has made the Reyes family fabulously wealthy, it’s left them—and the rest of the country—impoverished of that rare currency: intimacy. When Juan Diego mysteriously vanishes, the consequences shatter the lives of the entire Reyes clan.
As matriarch Autumn struggles to hold the family together, siblings Gideon, Holly, and Devon wrestle with questions of purpose and meaning—seeking self-worth in a world where everything has been cheapened. Outside the artificial safety of Arcadia, America has crumbled into an unrecognizable nation where a fundamentalist ex-preacher occupies the Oval Office, megacorporations blithely exploit their full citizenship, and a twenty-foot-high Great Wall of Freedom plastered with lucrative advertising bestrides the US-Mexican border.
In a polarized society now cripplingly hooked on manufactured highs, the Reyes family must overcome the seduction of simulation to find the kind of authentic human connection that offers salvation for all.