Escape Pods

Three surprisingly gratifying genre novels that take you away

Jun 14, 2011
Outside Magazine

   Photo: Courtesy of Ecco, Little, Brown, and Knopf

Who wants to spend the summer flipping through accounts of brooding characters just like us who suffer the same problems we do? Not me. I’ve read a bookmobile of contemporary novels in the past five years but can recall exactly two that I’d read again—genre novels both. Genre fiction may be the bane of lit-crit eggheads, but what isn’t exciting about whip-smart word artists applying fresh paint to tried-and-true constructs? This summer, publishers seem to have caught the bug: the season’s best adventure stories are genre yarns that free you from the Connecticut in your mind.