Much of this novel takes place in a blind in the marshes off the Carolina coast--duck country--a desolate spot tenanted by wildfowl and a few maimed people. In fact the story which is to be told, with its imminent violence, is at the start so infuriatingly oblique that it may well spook the reader. Before long it will hook him in the expectation of what is to happen along with the implication of what has happened.... Returning there, to the scene of his childhood where memories wash up ""from the shores of his edgy existence,"" is Dexter. What had once been his family's property is now a third class hunting lodge run by a guide, Atkins. Atkins, after twenty years in the army as a cook and a deeply shaming experience as a cuckold, has taken over the lodge, taken over Rose Harris, and ousted her husband into the army where he is brutalized. Harris has now returned and he is lurking in the blind to which Dexter is taken and where Dexter is to shoot ducks while Harris is waiting to kill the man who screwed him... Brower's first novel, written in a charged, compressed, styptic style, is filled with characters who are all casualties of their impotence, raw humiliations and rasping hatreds. It has an unmistakable undertow.