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Terrence RaffertyTom Bedlam is a terrific book and, for all its nutty improbabilities, in the end a bracingly sane one. It's not a truly old-fashioned novel; it's not (thankfully) anything so crass as a postmodern "subversion" of traditional fiction either. Hagen, like his hero, finds his own way, neither turning his back on his ancestry nor allowing it entirely to determine him. Providence may or may not be involved, but the novel is good enough to persuade you to believe in it, or at least in its utility in storytelling. Say what you will about coincidences, Tom Bedlam demonstrates that in the hands of a writer like George Hagen, they can help fiction fulfill its most basic responsibility: to make an impossibly large and dangerous world small enough to see whole.
—The New York Times