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Andrew Shaffer
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REVOLUTIONARY ROAD is my absolute favorite novel. Maybe. And THE STRANGER is pretty damn good too!
I agree that "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" captures the time and place like few other books do. As a historical record, it's certainly intriguing. I've heard it described as "heartwarming," but it is, as you say, somewhat upsetting. At times, the lengthy descriptions of food and its scarcity were just plain difficult to read. I had just finished reading Julie Powell's "Julie and Julia" prior to reading "A Tree..." Talk about two different Brooklyns! In one book, there's barely enough food to scrape together a full meal more than once a week. In the other book, there's almost more food than the author has time to eat. Reading both books back-to-back was a surreal reading experience, but definitely a reminder that although times may be tough, there's little comparison to the world our grandparents were born into. I could relate to one ("Julie...") and not so much to the other ("A Tree...")--and for that, I'm thankful.
My favorite edition of Huxley's BNW is the 2005 Harper Perennial paperback that paired it with Huxley's non-fiction look back, "Brave New World Revisited", and included a wonderfully witty Christopher Hitchens introduction. It's like taking a university class for seventeen bucks.
Thought I would die young. Didn't.
Toggle Commented Jan 5, 2010 on It All Changed in an Instant at The Roaring 20s
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Jan 5, 2010