I liked this novel about as well as any I've read in a long time--though if you are looking for heavily plot-driven fiction, this may not be the book for you. Things *do* happen in Amnesiascope, conveyed through the narrator's hilarious, pathetic, decadent but conscience-ridden monologue, but this is a novel which is less about plot and much more about voice and place. Erickson's romantic-cynic narrator explores what's left of a millennial L.A., where strange, warped things exist without ever being quite fully explained, and the rest of the world goes on unchanged.
Stories involving a noir, Apocalyptic L.A. can sometimes be boring and cliched these days, but L.A.'s noir side works with bittersweet absurdity here. That is because it is written from within the heart of L.A., fully cognizant of the city's flaws, but with a crazy grief and a crazy love that goes deeper than the surface perceptions of this city often portrayed by the media. Amnesiascope (and L.A. and the narrator) is demented, cynical, and heartbreaking, but also a place where individuality flourishes; it is hallucinatory and real; erotic and kinky, but with a deep and struggling romanticism buried beneath the wreckage of the narrator's life and his ruined city. Because ultimately, this novel is a heroic call to keep living life on your own terms, to say the things that need to be said, to reinvent yourself every time a part of you is killed off, and most romantic of all, to keep trying to be free in a society that wants to box you up and define you by its own boring cliches.