After The Saucers Landed
by Douglas Lain
The bastard-offspring of They Live and The Day the Earth Stood Still, as told by Jean Paul Sartre.
Shape-changing aliens may have landed on the Whitehouse lawn and subsequently integrated into human society, but humanity is still full of self-centered and self-absorbed individuals. Laura’s just scraping by on her art teacher’s salary. Donald, a bestselling author and UFOlogist who provided counseling to abductees, has tried to distance himself from the saucer landings and is looking to move on with his life.
But everything changes when Shelly, an alien enrolled in Laura’s art class, mysteriously switches places with Laura. Life begins to unravel. Laura then realizes this isn’t the first time Shelly has moved into another person’s body, and fragments of other people’s memories have jumped with her, including those of Donald’s wife. Laura begins to grasp that reality, or at least humanity’s perception of it, may be more flexible than anyone wants to admit. And though she can’t explain how or why, she suspects the aliens are behind it and will need Donald’s help to stop them.
In an egocentric society that sleepwalks through the rituals of daily life, would people even notice if the world around them suddenly and inexplicably changes? Part Jonathan Lethem (Amnesia Moon) and part Kurt Vonnegut (Slaughterhouse Five), Douglas Lain’s latest novel uses science fiction’s alien invasion rubric to examine and undermine the world we take for granted. This deeply unsettling satire places him alongside contemporaries like Jeff VanderMeer and Charles Yu as one of his generation’s most exciting and challenging speculative fiction voices.