Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Paul Auster

First Sentence (and a bit more)
"I shook his hand for the first time in the spring of 1967. I was a second-year student at Columbia then, a know-nothing boy with an appetite for books and a belief (or delusion) that one day I would become good enough to call myself a poet, and because I read poetry, I had already met his namesake in Dante's hell, a dead man shuffling through the final verses of the twenty-eighth canto of the Inferno."
Publisher's Description:

“One of America’s greatest novelists” dazzlingly reinvents the coming-of-age story in his most passionate and surprising book to date."

Sinuously constructed in four interlocking parts, Paul Auster’s fifteenth novel opens in New York City in the spring of 1967, when twenty-year-old Adam Walker, an aspiring poet and student at Columbia University, meets the enigmatic Frenchman Rudolf Born and his silent and seductive girfriend, Margot. Before long, Walker finds himself caught in a perverse triangle that leads to a sudden, shocking act of violence that will alter the course of his life.

Three different narrators tell the story of Invisible, a novel that travels in time from 1967 to 2007 and moves from Morningside Heights, to the Left Bank of Paris, to a remote island in the Caribbean. It is a book of youthful rage, unbridled sexual hunger, and a relentless quest for justice. With uncompromising insight, Auster takes us into the shadowy borderland between truth and memory, between authorship and identity, to produce a work of unforgettable power that confirms his reputation as “one of America’s most spectacularly inventive writers.”

Dear Reader,

I selected to read this in Audio book format. Paul Auster reads his books beautifully (in my opinion) and I can never resist the chance to listen to his hypnotizing voice. I was under the impression that everyone would enjoy his narration just as much, however, I found out that not everyone feels the same as me. I listen to my audio books in my car and every now and then, my boyfriend gets to listen too (when we decide to take my car.) He was blessed one day to ride with me while I was just starting Invisible, I was actually quite excited thinking that he'd find Auster as wonderful as me. No, he did not. I didn't even have to ask him what he thought of Auster's glorious voice, he told me right away, "How can you STAND it? His voice is so monotone!" That's when I realized what he said was true! I still didn't care, monotone or not, I loved every syllable. I wanted to tell this story because I think it taught me a lesson and really needs to be said for readers asking if they should Audio this book or just read it. I would jump up and down and say you'd be crazy not to want to hear Auster sex up his own writing... but on the other hand, maybe you would be like my boyfriend and wonder why he doesn't use any inflection or change his voice for each character. To each their own!

With that said, on to the book itself. This book is chock full of crazy stuff. If you know Auster, you'll know to expect this. If this is a first time Auster read? I would suggest picking up one of his earlier books first (or audio booking Winter Journal - my favorite). The story is told in seasons, each one a chapter of the book the main character has written of his life. I always love books about books, this one lacked a little of that charm though. The charm the story held was within the development of Adam and the whimsical characters he interacted with. Whimsical may be the wrong word for that if you start thinking of Disney characters but that was the first word that came to mind. You see Adam throughout his life; traveling, getting into trouble, struggling writer, wanting to know the meaning of everything. Auster always does this so well (again, in my opinion). The shocking moments of the book really took me for surprise, they come at times you don't expect them. I would recommend this book to anyone who has already experienced Auster and enjoyed his work.

Happy Reading,

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