This novel takes every scrap of information, every kernel of plot, and folds it back into itself. Nothing is wasted, and every thematic element has a prismatic effect on the narrative, letting you see these characters from every angle.
The story is well paced and it really makes you feel like you've traveled a long distance. You will find that you become best friends with the main characters. Colacci did an amazing job. Check the preview clip out. This guy just hammers out a read like none other.
I hadn't realized before I listened that this book won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction -- a prize that, in my opinion, is well deserved. A captivating story, masterfully woven, that tells a tale spanning the period from WWII through the early 1950's. David Colacci does an excellent job of narration, even if he does (as another reviewer pointed out) pronounce some Yiddish words strangely -- or at least not as my Polish & Russian Jewish family pronounced them. A very minor quibble. Highly recommended.
Archaeology student at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Going through HuffPo's 30 before you're 30 and wasn't excited for this at all. Great.
My teenage son, who is into comic books, and I both listened to this book at the same time. At 26 hours, this book is a more substantial committnent than I have ever made to any pleasure book in decades, but this book was worth the effort. Clearly well-researched, with compelling story lines, vivid descriptions, and interesting characters (both fictional and historical), this book gave us the joy of escape with a dollop or two of history (comic books, WWII, surrealism). I think my next book may be a deeper dive into this historical period.
Amazing story and brilliant narration combine to tell a story of America in transition with characters you really have to root for and can't forget.
The amazing writing coupled with David Colacci's fantastic performance reading it were more than enough to get me through many of the tedious tasks needed to be performed daily. Also, the voices he did were really impressive!
Being a history buff and comic book fan, this was the perfect book. I highly recommend it.
At first set in the early days of super hero comic books (late 1930's, Joe Kavalier and his cousin Sammy Clay come together from completely different worlds: middle class NY and pre-WWII Prague. They become partners in creating storylines, Sammy writing and Joe illustrating. (one of the more interesting aspects for me was the telling of the backstories of their creations - vividly described and easily visualized). In between the comic book business (and it was a big Business - Joe and Sam were so naïve) we get the individual stories of both Joe and Sam, and other characters, both peripheral and key, which makes this such a rich and involving story. The narrator is ok-not-great, but ok enough that I hung in; it's that good of a story.