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Lost in the desert?

What connects an ageing rock star, hippies, statistical analysis and plenty of woozy mysticism in the Californian desert? Fatema Ahmed puzzles out Hari Kunzru’s latest novel

By Fatema Ahmed   August 2011

The Californian rock formation known as the Pinnacles plays a central role in Kunzru’s novel—but just what it symbolises remains elusive. Image: Steve Berardi

Gods Without Men by Hari Kunzru (Hamish Hamilton, £12.99)

At first glance, Hari Kunzru’s fourth novel, Gods Without Men, seems like a departure from his previous three, all of which give the reader a main character to follow—through picaresque adventures in The Impressionist; a collision between the “real” and the cyber world in Transmission and most recently, in My Revolutions, the resurfacing of a hidden past. For a long stretch of Gods Without Men, however, the…

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