4.5 stars. Andy Futuro’s Cloud Country continues his story of hard-boiled private investigator Saru, whose exploits at the end of No Dogs in Philly led to world-shaking results. She’s trying to cope with the aftermath of the previous volume, on the run and unsure of what to do next.
The strength of the series continues to be Saru; she’s a fantastic anti-heroine who is easy to like even when she does very unlikable things. Her no-nonsense attitude is refreshing and searing, and kept me riveted all the way through.
The story of Cloud Country is far more dissonant from reality than No Dogs in Philly; where the first volume parodied our day-to-day life, this volume skewers our beliefs and religion, especially at Saru’s ongoing Dante’s Inferno meets madcap The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy romp through a funhouse mirror version of the universe. There’s no way at all to predict where the plot will go next, so don’t even try–just sit back and enjoy the ride.
The metaphysical mind-screw is tempered by Futuro’s dark sense of humor, which keeps the book lively and entertaining throughout. Black satire is the perfect tone to keep the weighty subjects from taking over the solid story and themes.
As with the first volume, I was very satisfied by Cloud Country, and I can’t wait to see what Futuro comes up with next.
Review copy kindly provided by the author.