Brilliant in concept and execution, The Brief History of the Dead is a spectacular achievement that lingers in the mind long after the final word.
©2006 Kevin Brockmeier; (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC
"Beautiful, delicate." (Publishers Weekly)
Finally, a truly great post-apocalyptic novel that manages to be about so much more than the nuts and bolts of the gory end of man. The premise is really fresh and the story is told so delicately and carefully that it unfolds like a flower. This book made me look at humankind and the nature of human relationships with a compassion that I had not felt for years.
About a year ago, I muscled through this novel in one reeeeeally long road trip. It kept me awake and engaged. When I finally reached my destination for the night, I was so bummed that there were 30 minutes left that I ended up listening to the rest of it there in the parking lot, in the same car I'd have paid good money to escape hundreds of miles earlier that day.
There were a few parts toward the end that I felt were too slow, and have since realized that I was just so curious and impatient to see how it ended that I was giving no respect to the process. Then I found out that when I just *listened* to the language and watched the story coming together in my mind, I was really glad that those parts were there.
I'm about to read it again. This time, instead of blazing through it, I'm going to take my time. It's worth it.
This book won't answer any questions about the afterlife - in fact, I walked away with more ideas to ponder, which I appreciate. This is a beautiful showcase of characters and emotions, with a novel concept as a backdrop. I would liked to have seen this concept fleshed out some more, but didn't need it to enjoy the book. Also, I was very pleased with the narrator, who was able to convey the message and emotions without overstepping his role.
This book was intriguing and had me thoroughly absorbed in it right up until the very unsatisfying ending. If it could even be said to have one. Still worth the read, as long as you are not waiting with baited breath to see how it all ends.
What an interesting concept! What a weak result!
Your questions about the characters and the afterworld(s) are never answered. Loose ends are never tied up. Huge sections are tedious meditations or pointless reminisceses.
Avoid. Avoid. Avoid.
I can't exactly classify this book for anyone, as it isn't classifiable. It's not sci/fi, it's not really dramatic, it's.. well it just is. it's sort of a slice of life & death.
Don't expect this to be a thrill ride, but if you let it in, this book will have an ongoing place in your memory; little things will suddenly pop into your head, little details you might not of picked up, but all the sudden their they are.
I really enjoyed this book, but as I said it’s not for everyone. The narration is some of the best I've ever listened to.
First off, I love the narrator's voice. Second, I think there's a lot of story potential and the plot idea is clever. However, I kept waiting for something more substantial to occur. It never happened and the ending was a bit of a disappointment.
The book seemed to consist of long, detailed, drawn-out descriptions focusing on minutia with no true plot or direction tying them together. In the end no real questions are answered and nothing is resoloved, which is disappointing since the idea behind the book is clever and novel. So much potential, but ultimately so much of my time was wasted listening to this book.
I really enjoyed this book! The concept is facinating and had me from the beginning. However, the ending was disappointing, and felt like the film at the movie theater just broke and no one was around to splice it back together. The characters were rich and there was just the right amount of descriptive detail.
I really liked this book. The premise was very interesting and the author did not waste a good idea. Even when the end becomes apparent, it still did not lose any steam. Very interesting and enjoyable book.
This book never gets going. The writer has put a lot of work into something that is not understandable. Look for something else to spend your time with.
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