Book Review: Readings

Eric Garcia

Readings

Casual Rex

A Novel

by Eric Garcia

Villard, 352 pp., $23.95

Casual Rex, the charming and absorbing tale of a dinosaur-inhabited, modern-day universe, delivers practically everything a comic/ noir/magical realism/mystery novel could be expected to provide. Los Angeles P.I. and velociraptor Vincent Rubio, who first apppeared in Anonymous Rex, Garcia's first installment in the series, has been around the block, but hasn't completely grown up. In Rubio's universe, dinosaurs didn't die out 65 million years ago. The 16 species of dinosaur that survived the great showers now wear high tech guises which make them look human, their tails and claws securely hidden by a fiendish set of buckles and straps. It isn't easy being green. Thanks to the success of these guises, there are dinos in every walk of life: police officers, dentists, prostitutes, doctors, and delectable drag queens. The ease with which dinos pass among humans disturbs some of their kind. Some of these disturbed dinos are part of the Progressives, a movement where getting in touch with your ancestors means a lot more than looking at genealogical charts. While overall a great read, the first two chapters of Casual Rex are slow-going. Get through these and the rewards are the size of a healthy T-Rex.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Book Reviews
<i>Presidio</i> by Randy Kennedy
Presidio by Randy Kennedy
For his debut novel, Kennedy creates a road story that portrays the harsh West Texas terrain beautifully and fills it with sympathetic characters.

Jay Trachtenberg, Sept. 14, 2018

Hunting the Golden State Killer in <i>I'll Be Gone in the Dark</i>
Hunting the Golden State Killer in I'll Be Gone in the Dark
How Michelle McNamara tracked a killer before her untimely death

Jonelle Seitz, July 20, 2018

More by Anna Hanks
Readings
Lost and Found: A Daughter's Tale of Violence and Redemption

Jan. 26, 2001

Off the Bookshelf
Frames of Reference: Looking at American Art, 1900-1950

Jan. 12, 2001

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Casual Rex, Eric Garcia

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle