A Naked Singularity tells the story of Casi, a child of Colombian immigrants who lives in Brooklyn and works in Manhattan as a public defender - one who, tellingly, has never lost a trial. Never.
In the book we hear what happens when his sense of justice and even his sense of self begin to crack - and how his world then slowly devolves. It's a huge, ambitious novel clearly in the vein of DeLillo, Foster Wallace, Pynchon, and even Melville, and it's told in a distinct, frequently hilarious voice, with a striking human empathy at its center. Its panoramic reach takes listeners through crime and courts, immigrant families and urban blight, media savagery and media satire, scatology and boxing, and even a breathless heist worthy of any crime novel. If Infinite Jest stuck a pin in the map of mid-'90s culture and drew our trajectory from there, A Naked Singularity does the same for the feeling of surfeit, brokenness, and exhaustion that permeates our civic and cultural lives today.
In the opening sentence of William Gaddis' A Frolic of His Own, a character sneers, "Justice? You get justice in the next world. In this world, you get the law." A Naked Singularity reveals the extent of that gap and lands firmly on the side of those who are forever getting the law.
©2008 Sergio De La Pava (P)2016 Recorded Books
I bought the because the narrator sounded good on sampling and the quick blurb about the book sounded interesting. I'm not sure what I just listened to the story was all over the place, I lost track numerous times. Also I'm not so sure how I'm supposed to take the ending either. In any case the story was a diversion but I'm not sure to or from what
I'll start out by saying I enjoyed this book a lot, but that's because I'm an over the road trucker and have a lot of time to kill, and as a consequence books that ramble and spend a ton of time going into things that don't move the plot forward don't bug me in the slightest as long as it's entertaining and/or insiteful. This book rambles like crazy. It includes probably a full hour (if not more) of a biography of a boxer, and full transcripts of plenty of conversations overheard by the protagonist. One more thing, this book isn't nearly as narratively straightforward as you might think. Almost a literary 2001: A Space Odessey (I'm sure I spelled that wrong) except for way less boring. What I'm saying is that many parts of this book make no sense whatsoever and I still have no idea what happened, just like after I watched 2001: ASO.
Every (no exaggeration) character is a complete caricature of themselves, with their personality dialed up to 11 no matter what that personality may be. It's an interesting read, that's for sure.
But the book is also hilarious, entertaining, philosophical, scientific, educational (sorry I saved that for last De La Pava). I thoroughly enjoyed it, and if it sounds at all like your kinda book, I highly recommend it.
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