This was the second assigned reading for Advanced Novel Workshop. It is a dark and painful book that often waxes poetic. Smith Henderson uses innovative, rule-breaking prose to get across scattered states of mind and high-tension moments. It is difficult to say that there is something for a writer to learn there; rather it is a good example of someone who has found both their voice and unique techniques to express it, and we should just sit back in quiet appreciation. Anything more would be imitative.
The book itself is a grueling experience, and I liked it a lot better than Son of a Trickster because it felt purposeful.