Friday, August 22, 2014

"Your FATHERS, where are they and the PROPHETS, do they live forever?", the latest Egger's book

This is not a book for everyone.  When Dave Eggers writes a book, it is generally read here soon after it is published.  One can never predict the subjects of his books as they are distinctly varied., and this one maintains that unpredictable trend.  Their common link is distinct clear writing and bits of humor no matter how serious the subject.  One would need to have a seriously dark and sardonic outlook to find to easily find that humor here, but it must be admitted that some of the attacks on the language and phrases used by others were both unpleasantly and pleasantly familiar, and have been experienced here, "if you will."

The book was aggressively panned in "The New York Times Book Review" section four or five weeks ago.  That is not the attitude here.  It is extremely current in some of its societal observations and cuts into interpersonal thoughts that are often painful without hesitation.

The main character is a troubled and intelligently insane 34 year old who, in an effort to understand better why he became the person he is, kidnaps six people who had major influences on his life.  He puts them in restraints in different segments of an abandoned military base, and with threats of violence and tasers, forces them into conversations about his interactions with them.  He relentlessly demands the truth.

Commentary at ENS is never, or maybe almost never, one of telling a book's story.  It is just meant to provide a capsule of information.  Was "Your Fathers...and the Prophets" rewarding reading.  In the end the answer here is, without hesitation, yes.  At various points while reading it was necessary, if you know the feeling, to push on to get that point.  It was worth it, as there were insights in this book that will linger with me for a long time.     


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