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InstaReview: Dinosaurs by Lydia Millet

"But being alone was also a closed loop. A loop with a slipknot, say. The loop could be small or large, but it always returned to itself. You had to untie the knot, finally. Open the loop and then everything sank in. And everyone. Then you could see what was true - that separateness had always been the illusion."

Dinosaurs’ protagonist, Gil, is an ultra-wealthy man that inherited his money at a young age when orphaned by a drunk driver. Since then, Gil has moved through life without trying to make too much noise, always thinking of others, and living quietly with his money and small group of friends in New York City. After a bad breakup, Gil reflects on the choices he’s made and decides to shake things up by buying a house, sight unseen, in Arizona. Upon arriving, he notices that his neighbors have a large glass window that allows him to see into their home (and lives). Gil’s life quickly intertwines with the family next door and these new relationships challenge the beliefs he’s held so dear. Dinosaurs may seem like a simple story; there wasn’t a typical climax and at times it seemed aimless. However, the author was intentional in creating everyday connections in the seemingly mundane and explored human nature through a cast of characters that were neither “good” nor “bad.” We loved how conflicted we felt about them, Gil in particular frustrated us (in a good way!), his naivety, grief, anger, and altruism created a complicated character that we enjoyed. This is a 100% character driven novel and the ladies of OWC are here for it.


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