From the Man Booker-shortlisted author of The Overstory
In a digital laboratory on the shores of Puget Sound, virtual reality researchers race to complete the Cavern, a bland white room that can become a jungle, a painting, or a vast Byzantine cathedral. In a war-torn city on the eastern shores of the Mediterranean, an American is held hostage, chained to a radiator in an empty white room...
Adie Klarpol, a disillusioned artist, is invigorated by the thrill of working with the Cavern's cutting-edge technology. As Cold War empires collapse and the Berlin Wall falls, she retreats into the cyber-realities she has been hired to create. In Beirut, English teacher Taimur Martin is held in solitary confinement by Islamic fundamentalists, where he must keep his mind whole by the force of his memory alone. What can possibly join two such remote places? Only the shared imagination, a room that these two people unwittingly build in common, where the strands of this wildly inventive novel coalesce into one.
"Spectacular... Powers loves placing brilliant characters inside a fluorescent incubator, then watching ideas hatch on the page... Riveting"
"Richard Powers is one of the few writers who has taken on the challenge of Thomas Pynchon, creating a complex, unsentimental and simultaneously deeply moving world"
"There's no other way to say it: Richard Powers is a genius"
"One of the finest efforts from the massively gifted Powers, who again probes the fluid buffer between science and the imagination"
"Superb...powers' seventh and perhaps greatest novel...one of the most astonishing feats I've ever seen in literature."
Three Penguin Random House books have made it onto the shortlist for the 2018 Man Booker Prize; making up half of the six-strong list.