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Cedar Rivers is on a strange errand. A doctor sidelined into the strange world of the first dot-com boom, he has come to Albany, New York, in between business in Iceland and home in Silicon Valley, to meet a woman he hasn’t seen in twenty years. Then a Chuck Taylor–shod proto-Goth with chipped black nail polish, Kat is now a literary up-and-comer who needs Cedar to vet her memoir-an account of the summer they were sweethearts. As if that weren’t enough, she’s written parts of it from his point of view. Through an intense weekend in a snowed-in motel room, Cedar and Kat relive their most painful memories: Before they had a chance at first love, Kat’s mother and her new fiancé dragged Kat off on a family trip. Kat returned with a secret, one which-when she shared it with Cedar-set off a series of drastically miscalculated assumptions that dominoed into a moment of startling tragedy. Misconception is a startlingly original debut novel-a smart and provocative coming-of-age story, and a fresh and witty comment on the unreliability of memory and storytelling-that establishes Ryan Boudinot as one of the most promising talents of his generation.

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