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Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon
Inherent Vice is set in Los Angeles at the end of the 60s. A private investigator, Doc Sportello, is hired by an ex-girlfriend to report that her lover, a real estate magnate, might have been kidnapped. Doc, who is often stoned, does a cursory investigation only to be knocked unconscious, charged with murder, and blackmailed by the police with an offer to become an informer. It leads to world of conspiracies, drugs, and a web of connections that link people that should have no relation to another. It's a counter-counterculture of Pynchonian complexity set in a time of surf bands, sexual revolution, and conspiracies run amok. Inherent Vice has received mostly positive reviews with The Telegraph saying, "Unlike much of Pynchonís other work, however, Inherent Vice wears its learning lightly, intermixing it with dialogue that zings, jokes that never overstay their welcome and a stream of hilariously bad puns and wickedly acute observations. Who would have thought it? One of Americaís most wilful and obscure writers has produced the most enjoyable beach read of the summer."