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Fascinating how many novelists are working either The Iliad or The Odyssey into their works at the moment--not that it's new, but I'm conscious of Barry Unsworth's recent The Song of the Kings, Malouf's Ransom, both of which were clearly going to respond to Homer, but I wasn't expecting it in Schlink's recent novel. Has anyone come across any other recent Homer reworkings?
I loved this novel. It's not as tight as The Reader, but it's as politically powerful and ethically interesting. I do recommend it.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Probably you're looking at this page because you read or saw The Reader and enjoyed it, and now you're curious to see what else Bernhard Sclink has written and wondering whether he's a one-hit-wonder. My advice, if you liked the first book and are looking for a smart, thoughtful, intimate novel, go for it. I seriously enjoyed this book.
The novel is something of a detective story, a German boy trying to reconstruct the story of his father who died in WWII, and to understand the relationship between his mother and paternal grandparents. Like all of Schink's work, he manages to tell the tell the story of German 20th century history through the deeply personal experiences of one person and family. Maybe it's just me, but I find the quiet brooding of Schlink's characters deeply endearing and believable.
I will say that the ending gets a little weird and perhaps a little too allegorical. And I can understand those who say the novel is too long and gets boring at times, though I don't agree. Again, if you've liked any of Schlink's other work, then I highly recommend this one.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful