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More Bookish Thoughts...,
This review is from: A Visit from the Goon Squad (Paperback)The cover of "A Visit From The Goon Squad" labels the book "a novel" and most critics have referred to it as such. However, if you wish to read a novel, look elsewhere because Egan has actually written a collection of linked stories.
But forget categorization; Egan's work displays brash beauty as she delves into the power of shame, an emotion which makes one present in the moment as effectively as does fear or desire. The protagonist, Bennie, a famous music producer, catalogues his shame on the back of a parking ticket. His assistant, Sasha, deals with hers by compulsively shoplifting. The stories also follow the interlocking fates of compelling, tender and humourous characters: Bennie's high school crowd, Sasha's parents, her uncle and her suicidal friend.
As well as shame, Egan's themes include immortality, redemption and a longing to master time. She proves a fearless writer and takes risks by employing different points of view and unconventional styles including a 75-page interlude in power point. These edgy techniques range from jarring to brilliant but, overall, they unite to form a well-crafted collection that ventures vitally into new territory.