Trust by Hernan Diaz is one of those novels that's always pulling a fast one on a reader. Take the opening section: You settle in, become absorbed in the story and, then, 100 pages or so later — Boom! — the novel lurches into another narrative that upends the truth of everything that came before.
When a work of fiction reminds me that it is a work of fiction simply to show me how gullible I am, well, thanks, I knew that already. But sometimes these metadramatic maneuvers serve a novel's larger themes. Susan Choi's 2019 novel, Trust Exercise, about the misleading powers of art and memory, is one recent instance; now, Diaz's Trust is another. That word "trust" in both their titles is a tip-off that that's exactly what we readers shouldn't do upon entering these slippery fictional worlds.