"Cackling ghosts and mysteriously dead cops are not generally the stuff of literary fiction. Yet Dorst here pushes and blurs the boundaries of such formulaic subject matter. His book is not quite a horror story, nor exactly a mystery, nor just a hard-boiled police procedural, but an adult coming-of-age saga that pulls with energy and imagination from these various genres....
Dorst is after something spookier here than visions of "the dead, everywhere, dimmer than the living ... some even flickering like cheap special-effects." Mercer's deepest fear - one shared, in varying ways, by all the central characters here - is that "he has squandered too much time, too many opportunities, too many possible connections to people, none of which he can get back." And in exploring that rich, unsettling theme, "Alive in Necropolis" proves truly haunting."
Causes Doug Dorst Supports
The Nature Conservancy; The Milo Foundation; East Bay Community Law Center; Natural Resources Defense Council