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'Gold Fame Citrus' by Claire Vaye Watkins: EW review

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Gold Fame Citrus

Current Status:
In Season
Claire Vaye Watkins
Riverhead Books

We gave it a B+

Since the earth’s freshwater supply is drying up in real life, this dystopian novel about a drought-ridden America shouldn’t read like science fiction. But Watkins makes the story both psychedelic and scarily real as she follows ex-model Luz, her boyfriend Ray, and a toddler named Ig through a California wasteland that’s a sea of sand dunes. Watkins has been praised for evocative landscapes and environmentalist themes, but she can get bogged down in John Muir-style cataloging of flora and fauna. She’s more gifted at writing characters like Ig, a defenseless child whose everyday thirst is devastating. Watkins knows that if you want to save the world, you first have to make readers care about saving the humans. B+