Booklist on #YourFaceinMine

(Starred review) “In Row’s disquieting near-future medical tale, 38-year-old Kelly Thorndike learns that all things are fungible after he has a chance encounter with a former high-school classmate. The guy who once was Martin Lipkin, Jewish bassist in a rock band with Kelly, is now Martin Wilkinson, a wealthy African American international entrepreneur, complete with a gorgeous African American wife and two African American daughters. They are adopted, of course, because Martin has had “racial reassignment surgery,” or RRS. Turns out there’s a physician in Bangkok who’s added RRS to his repertoire of gender-reassignment surgeries, perfecting the processes of changing skin color, hair texture, facial structure—the whole nine yards. Now Martin wants public-radio-station manager Kelly to document his story to help him come out, as it were, for purposes of, well, no spoilers here. Row has outdone himself in a first novel that offers great quantities of food for thought and discussion involving, for starters, questions of race and identity. Plunging deeper than common notions of the self and racial distinctions, Row presents wholly credible, if not thoroughly trustworthy, characters and complicated circumstances that will inspire serious reflection.”

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