It’s Christmas day in dusty, barren Raindale, New Mexico, and exotic dancer Tiffany Golden hears a local news report that changes her life forever. A mysterious, blinding bolt of light has leapt from the heavens to incinerate a feed shed belonging to one Herbert Hickelcropper, a local llama farmer.
And with that singular piece of plot development in place, author Dylan Fairchild goes on to weave a brilliant and unique sci-fi novel called My Name Is Nelson.
The story goes on to tell of the Rainman-like research scientist Nelson Troutman’s all-consuming drive toward creation of a limitless energy source. Then, it explores the poignant but platonic relationship with heart-of-gold stripper Ms. Golden. And, it reveals the fate of two brutal groups who engage in what Troutman calls “mean” behavior. (Hint: Don’t set a place for any of them at dinner tonight…)
The book has been dubbed by its author as “pretty much the best novel ever.” We don’t know about that. But it’s safe to say he’s crafted a potential bestseller — and, possibly, a hit movie. Clearly, the rapid-patter dialogue would play well on the big screen.
But it’s the audacious plot that really grabs the reader’s attention.
Troutman is a former long-suffering orphan who has been bullied and made to feel “different” all his life. But that’s over now. He has developed a next gen wonder weapon that can cruise the global skies indefinitely without landing and with only minimal operator input. And when that operator — in this case, Troutman himself — becomes aware of a situation anywhere in the world where innocent people are being “treated mean,” he unleashes the weapon’s onboard death ray, instantly vaporizing bad guys and buildings with equal aplomb.
It’s a tremendously entertaining storyline with rich characterization and cinematic action scenes designed to draw you deep into the book. And, in terms of sheer storytelling mastery, it’s one of the best books we’ve seen in awhile.
We give My Name Is Nelson five-plus stars and look forward to an equally well-written sequel.