So September… only one book but in my defence it was 866 pages long.
That book was the recently shortlisted Man Booker Prize 16th novel 4321 by author Paul Auster. I have never read of his previous so why not dive in with something that took just under 3 years to write.
4321 narrates four versions of one young man’s life. Four identical Fergusons made of the same DNA, four boys who are the same boy, go on to lead four parallel and entirely different lives. The book is set in New York and New Jersey and begins at the end of the 1940’s.
I found Archie Ferguson as a character endearing , from boyhood to adolescence on through college years and beyond. He is a journalism writer of immediate events – sports, movie and book reviews, and politics (and/or anti-politics); he is also a writer of poetry. He is a writer of books, albeit at times very strange books…
The different partS of his life cycle run parallel, yet with subtle differences. This is a credit to Auster’s writing style as I didn’t get lost in the process, you also get almost gentle reminders at the start of each chapter so it was easy to re-connect and continue with flow of the book.
There are tragedies & triumphs & heartbreaking losses and with help and some downright sheer determination Archie manages to move through them using these experiences as a learning tool for growth and it felt at times as if Auster wants to include the reader on the actual journeys with Archie rather than just through the pages.
If you are a very fast reader then you might just finish in time as the winner of prize will be announced on the 17th October.
The BBC News Channel usually shows the winning part of the ceremony live
Have you read it ? do you think it will win ?