Books I Love

Fates and Furies May 16 2016, 0 Comments

"Even from her impossibly high starting point, Lauren Groff just keeps getting better and better. Her debut novel, “The Monsters of Templeton” (2008); her stirring story collection, “Delicate Edible Birds” (2010); and my favorite book of 2012, “Arcadia ” — all demonstrated her exquisite style and tough, heartbreaking compassion. But her new novel, “Fates and Furies,” is a clear-the-ground triumph. Spanning decades, oceans and the whole economic scale from indigence to opulence, this novel holds within its grasp the story of one extraordinary marriage. Not yet 40, Groff nonetheless captures the complicated ways love blesses, transforms and, yes, deceives us over many years. (...) Swelling with a contrapuntal symphony of passions, “Fates and Furies” is that daring novel that seems to reach too high — and then somehow, miraculously, exceeds its own ambitions."
Ron Charles in the Washington Post


It's hard to pin down exactly what Lauren Groff managed to do here but one can only sit back and think hard on what just happened to you once you finish reading this truly stunning novel. Similarly to my experiences with "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay", "American Pastoral", "The Corrections", "The Interestings", "Station Eleven" and "The Woman Upstairs", I had goose bumps after reading the first pages of "Fates and Furies" and wanted to live in that creation forever.

The depth and levels of understanding at work in our lives, the subterranean currents running beneath our feet, the invisible lines of randomness and chance crisscrossing in our midst, the past informing the present, the inner life feeding the one we present to others, the ocean that sometimes lies between the two, the elemental, character-defining events of our youth perpetually tinting our actions. This book contains multitudes.

The themes are big and bold, yet rooted in the finite and delicate details of the everyday. The intimate is brought to life with such precision and uniqueness. With cruelty and tenderness. With cunning and smartness. The construction is daring and ambitious and wild. It will leave you breathless and grateful. Be ready for Part 2 and its astonishing "Furies"...

Mathilde, oh Mathilde, I will never forget you.

And what can one say about the writing? Prose that sings and soars and melts like butter on your tongue. Visceral and poetic and visually evocative. An absolute dream.

What a f***ing trip. (Please excuse my language)