Saturday, November 06, 2010

A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

Not really about music, although ostensibly about a handful of people who first meet in 1980 during the rise of the punk (well, post-punk, really) era. First Egan novel I've read, and I'm impressed. A book about survivorship and bad choices and persistence and emotional pain, among other things. Egan effortlessly describes the lower East Side of Manhattan, Naples, the African veldt, suburban New York suburbs. It reminded me (in a way) of David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas, in that the chapters move radically in voice and time and emphasis one to the next, in the manner of wonderful, sadistic meal, where you are left longing for the last taste in your mouth, even as a new and even better taste replaces it. I suffered from chapter-nostalgia constantly.

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