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Publisher's Summary

Brian Hall’s compulsively listenable novel vividly re-creates Lewis and Clark’s extraordinary journey into the unknown western frontier. Focusing on the emblematic moments of the participants’ lives, the story unfolds through the perspectives of four competing voices - from the troubled and mercurial figure of Meriwether Lewis, the expedition leader who found that it was impossible to enter paradise without having it crumble around him, to Sacagawea, the Shoshone girl-captive and interpreter for the expedition, whose short life mirrored the disruptive times in which she lived. Bringing the day-to-day life of the expedition alive as no work of history ever could, Hall’s magnificent novel fills in the gaps and provides a new perspective on the most famous journey in American history.

©2003 Brian Hall (P)2021 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“Hall, a spellbinding prose stylist, writes with the kind of ethereal poetic sweep found in the historical novels of Michael Ondaatje and Wallace Stegner.” (Los Angeles Times)

“Fascinating, multifaceted...Hall’s magnum opus of a historical novel makes hugely enterprising use of firsthand accounts of the pioneering journey.” (The New York Times

“Artful layering and flawless pacing transform a monolithic legend into a quixotic, heartbreaking story, one you enter rather than salute.” (The Boston Globe)

What listeners say about I Should Be Extremely Happy in Your Company

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Wanted Lewis and Clark, got hours of native rape and name changing.

This book is probably better read than listened too. Of the multiple readers none can seemingly find footing in the writer’s voice. All of them sound as if they are sounding out the words as they go, and seemingly have a complete lack of understanding of where any of it is going.

3 1/2hrs in and Ive heard more about native americans changing there names than either Lewis or Clark. The author also presumes all readers are top scholars of the age, for nothing is defined, described or explained. The only things deeply described are frivolous details like natives scratching their itchy assholes due to walking.

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  • KH
  • 07-10-21

Difficult to follow

I did struggle to finish this book. I found it difficult to understand several characters due to Indian names being the same as words in the English language, and they were not previously defined to be names of people. All in all, I found the majority of the story frustrating and was happy when it ended.