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Jonathan YardleyNatural Elements is a mature, inventive, ambitious novel. Among other things, it is about investment bubbles and the workings of the commodities markets; scientific research and the perilous paths down which it can go; retirement communities, nursing homes and other institutions into which we dump people for whom we do not have, or to whom we do not want to give, sufficient time; the tensions within families and the ties that somehow survive them; the aftershocks of a distant war that brutalized innocent people and left memories haunted by loss. To all of this Mason brings a clear, inviting prose style that resists at every turn the temptation to be showy.
—The Washington Post