Iowa City

A study of isolation: The Late Americans, by Brandon Taylor, reviewed

The Late Americans, Brandon Taylor’s second novel, follows the lives of a group of friends living in Iowa City over the span of a year. Early on, Seamus, a poet completing his master’s degree, imagines an ‘indifferent God… squinting at them as they went about their lives on the circuits like little automata in an exhibit called The Late Americans’, and this is a fine description of the novel. Each character is the focus of a chapter, and we watch as Seamus, Fyodor, Ivan, Timo, Noah, Bea, Fatima and Daw’s lives overlap, in bars, seminar rooms and dance studios, while they negotiate their place in a world determined by their