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mayhap

mayhap

I read compulsively, eclectically and fannishly.

Currently reading

Quand un roi perd la France (Les rois maudits, #7)
Maurice Druon
Antigones
George Steiner
The Captive & The Fugitive
Marcel Proust, C.K. Scott Moncrieff, Terence Kilmartin, D.J. Enright
A Visit from the Goon Squad - Jennifer Egan Occupying a position somewhere between a collection of short stories and a novel, this book takes the form. series of loosely but densely linked vignettes. Each one spins off a brand-new viewpoint character like buds emerging from a hydra, although the first two, Sasha the klepto assistant and Bennie her record-label boss, are revisited indirectly often enough to qualify as the nearest thing to main characters, their shared involvement in punk rock cohering into a plurality at best of subject matter, although it would be an exaggeration to say the book is about them, or it. Chronologically, it skips back into the near-past and darts forward into the near-future, which is competently realized for a mainstream (well, not-SF) book. Even within a single viewpoint and its corresponding time, the precognitive if not omniscient narrator often darts into the future as though driven by some compulsive tic to tie up a few loose ends to compensate for all the new ones left hanging.

There are too many points of similarity for me not to be reminded of David Mitchell, and it's just not a comparison that's flattering to Goon Squad. It's a quick, slick read, but it's positively gimcrack-y compared to the stone brilliance of Cloud Atlas and nowhere near as ambitious or inventive as Ghostwritten, (which is the fairer comparison, since it follows the same discipline of never returning to a viewpoint character).

That said, this is a particularly suitable choice for book club reading among people who don't necessarily have reading tastes in common. There's something for everyone to love or hate or both!