Bad Company

“It is rare to encounter a contemporary author bold enough to make his protagonist this unlikable. The novel’s other characters are flawed too; like unhappy families, each one is off-putting in their own way. But, as Osman remarks, “an excess of virtue strangles a book.” Working in a literary industry hungry for prepackaged, reader-friendly uplift, Ruthnum has decided to frustrate the desire for a feel-good story featuring an inspirational minoritized hero. Instead, he has written a book with no easy-to-digest moral and even less sentimentality.”

The Walrus, April 2022