Yeah, I was actually going through a divorce when I wrote the first draft of it, and I was living in a seedy sublet efficiency apartment one very hot summer, and my wife at the time decided she didn’t want to be married. My world seemed to be collapsing so this story—this other world that I [was] writing about—gave me a haven, someplace to hang out. At bottom, this story is about just trying to hold things together, and the story is also about how a family who is besieged by difficulty can prevail. So I had a lot of fun with that, which is to say, the book is openly hopeful, even though readers comment that it’s a “dystopic” [sic] view—there’s some “end of the world” feeling about the book. The book really is just about a civil war and surviving a civil war as I was trying to survive a divorce, so it was really important to me that the characters in the book—that is, the characters I cared about—act humanely, that they cared about doing the right thing. Maybe the rest of the world didn’t but [the family] did. . . . That’s the way I want to live my life, that’s the way I wanted my wife at the time to act—but she didn’t—and, so, in writing the story I tried to preserve something of how I think the world should be and how I think a family should act.