On a windy September day, twenty-five-year-old Slater Brown stands in the back of a bicycle taxi hurtling the wrong way down the busiest street in San Francisco. Slater has come to "see the elephant," to stake his claim to fame and become the greatest writer ever. But this city of gleaming water and infinite magic has other plans in this astounding first novel-at once a love story, a feast of literary imagination, and a dazzlingly original tale of passion, ambition, and genius in all their guises...
Slater Brown lays siege to San Francisco like Achilles circling Troy-until he crashes headlong into reality. Out of money and prospects, he applies for a job at a moribund weekly newspaper called the Morning Trumpet-and, as if by fate, is given a very special parting gift from a moonlighting mystic.
Suddenly Slater has an exclusive on every story in the city. With his uncanny knack for finding scoops, he's bringing the Trumpet back to life, infuriating a corrupt mayor and falling in love with the woman destined to become his muse. But it is the astonishing inventor Milo Magnet-a man obsessed with harnessing the weather-who will force Slater to navigate the most dangerous straits.
For as Milo unleashes his power on San Francisco and the ravishing Callio de Quincy entrances Slater with hers, as storm clouds gather literally overhead, Slater will become at once a pawn, a savior, and the last best hope for a city that needs him-and his knack for the truth-more than ever before.