When David Pepin first dreamed of killing his wife, he didn't kill her himself. He dreamed convenient acts of God. At a picnic on the beach, a storm front moved in. David and Alice collected their chairs, blankets, and booze, and when the lightning flashed, David imagined his wife lit up, her skeleton distinctly visible as in a children's cartoon, Alice then collapsing into a smoking pile of ash....
He dreamed unconsciously and he dreamed sporadically. His fantasies simply welled up. If she called from work, he asked, "Did something happen?" If she was late coming home, he began to worry too soon. He began to dream according to her schedule....
... There could be no violence. But occasionally David became a Walter Mitty of murder. He dreamed his own agency. He did it. He shot Alice, he bludgeoned her, he suffocated her with a pillow. But these fantasies were truncated: they flashed in his mind, then he cut them off before the terminal moment because he never surprised her in time. He saw her recognize him as he came round the corner with knife, bat, or gun, felt her hand grip the arm that held the pillow over her face--and it was all too terrible to contemplate.
"Whale!" he screamed at her, because she was enormous. "Goddamn blue whale!" (She'd struggled mightily with depression but was now back on meds.)
Do people still classify art as post-modern? I do. This definitely fits into my understanding of post-modern fiction. The story itself is intriguing as it moves forward and backward and interlinks with Sam Shepherd's story (The Fugitive). A very weird read; intriguing, a bit wordy, well written for the most part. As I read this book I constantly puzzled over how the mind works and how Adam Ross's mind works, and felt sympathy for what must be the state of Adam Ross's mind. He writes a good book.