Shelfari edited the description of Lost Memory of Skin Saturday, June 18, 2011.
The author of Continental Drift , Rule of the Bone and The Sweet Hereafter returns with a very original, riveting mystery about a young outcast, and a contemporary tale of guilt and redemption. The perfect convergence of writer and subject, Lost Memory of Skin probes the zeitgeist of a troubled society where zero tolerance has erased any hope of subtlety and compassion. Suspended in a modern-day version of limbo, the young man at the centre of Russell Banks's uncompromising and morally complex new novel must create a life for himself in the wake of incarceration. Known in his new identity only as the Kid, he is shackled to a GPS monitoring device and forbidden to go near where children might gather. He takes up residence under a south Florida causeway, in a makeshift encampment with other convicted sex offenders. Barely beyond childhood himself, the Kid, despite his crime, is in many ways an innocent. Enter the Professor, a university sociologist of enormous size and intellect who finds in the Kid the perfect subject for his research. But when the Professor's past resurfaces and threatens to destroy his carefully constructed world, the balance in the two men's relationship shifts. Banks has long been one of our most acute and insightful novelists. Lost Memory of Skin is a masterful work of fiction that unfolds in language both powerful and beautifully lyrical.