And Then is a ghost story, telling tales about the people that come and go from our lives and the indelible marks they leave. Opening with a vignette describing Jean Rouch’s short film Gare du Nord, Breckenridge sets a deeply unsentimental tone, both necessary to and greatly in opposition with his descriptions of his father’s slow and deliberate death. Interwoven are the stories of a young woman’s hopeful arrival in New York, a young man’s voyeuristic summer spent housesitting for his professor, and a soldier who never made it out of Vietnam. What they all have in common is a deep preoccupation with the way lives resonate and connect, an emotionally honest love story about how we relate to others and ourselves.
In this crisp, fragmented novel, Breckenridge captures the dwelling of lost souls in living minds…introducing the supernatural into his compact, propulsive tales.–Publishers Weekly
I was moved and often startled by And Then; a brown study of the hold the dead maintain over the living, of yearning, memory and regret. The writing is vivid, direct, clear; always surprising, always a pleasure to read.–Christopher Sorrentino, author of The Fugitives, a National Book Award finalist
There’s an elegiac stillness at the center of this powerful novel, a sense of starting over, of remembering and forgetting, that lingers like daybreak in the heart and mind.–Lewis Warsh, author, Director of MFA in Creative Writing at Long Island University