Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Lincoln in the Bardo, by George Saunders

There has been a lot of hype about this book.  Everyone seems to love it... including me!  I listened to it on audiobook, a format to which the book is especially suited.  There are many different voices, so once I got used to who was whom it was just like following a conversation in a very weird place with references that I didn't understand at first.  For example, when I heard "I was in my sick box..." I thought, "what's a sick box?" 

Saunders has created a whole different sort of world for us, one that is similar to our own but different enough to make it a puzzle for the reader/listener.  Once you figure out what's going on it all makes sense.  He includes a lot of historical fact also, so if you are interested in the American Civil War you would get a kick out of this book just for that aspect of it.  The book is unusual in that it IS loaded with factual content while also being incredibly creative.  I've never read anything like it.

As for the title... once you read or listen to this book, do you think "Lincoln" refers to the President, or his son, or both?

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