“Illegal immigration,” “undocumented workers”—Mike Leahy and many Americans have heard these terms every day, but for Mike, these phrases have existed mainly as vague abstractions. A chance meeting with an old high school classmate initiates a whole series of events that propel Mike past the nebulous world of abstraction into the very real and enigmatic world of undocumented workers—a world in which both businesses and governmental agencies can profit, a world in which there is no minimum wage, no pension, no sick leave, and absolutely no security. For many of the workers, the only reality they know is work, and for many employers and even governmental agencies, the only reality is accounts receivable. While struggling to deal with this bizarre world, Mike also finds himself struggling with his own personal passions.
INVERSION: THE ROUNDHOUSE TURNAROUND
Does greed or political connections or sex trump everything? Sometimes these factors rule over all—even over science and engineering. Adam Holman, an electrical engineer, works for a company that promises to deliver what has never been done: a fully solar-powered freight train. Fully aware of the current technological limitations and coping poorly with a failed marriage, Adam nevertheless dedicates himself to doing the impossible all the while skeptical of its success. His boss, however, has no doubts whatsoever as she steams through the dinner-party set, promising—and sometimes seducing—investors into pouring money into her company. Meanwhile, Adam labors on. So, too, does Lynn Bledsoe, who works for a rival firm with less ambitious but more realistic goals. Her main struggle centers on her personal life—a life her family disapproves of. All the characters experience a series of inversions in a world dubbed the Roundhouse Turnaround.