A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

It was quite some time ago that I read about this, so I really had no idea what it was about when it started (but I remembered that it had some acclaim, I think). When I began the story I didn’t actually like it-first we read about Sasha who is a kleptomaniac, then about her boss, Bennie, who seemed kind of sketchy/sleazy.  But then I got really into it.  It is a nonlinear story that jumps all over from character to character and everyone is somehow connected to someone else.  I found it very interesting that I pretty much found something in every character to dislike-they just were not warm kind people at all–and yet, I was invested in what happened to them.  And you know I love epilogues so I loved it when occasionally the author would, in a matter of three paragraphs, tell you what eventually happens to someone in their whole life.  The interconnectedness is what I really liked about this book (and what simultaneously blows my mind and makes me a little uncomfortable because the characters, for the most part, don’t know they are connected and who’s to say that is not happening in your life?), and I do believe it was wonderfully constructed-it simply couldn’t be told in a linear fashion.  At the end though, there is a circular aspect to the story which is pretty amazing.

The only element of the book that I thought was a little odd was the “futuristic” angle at the end.  By the end of the story it’s about 15 years in the future from now, but the world seems to be a very different place-not a completely unrealistic imagining of the future, but it seemed jarring.

Overall, though, a big thumbs up! And that’s 2 books in the New Year already, hurrah!

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2 thoughts on “A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

  1. Well done for having read 2 books already! I just finished Before I fall, and I totally loved it. 52 books is a lot, I’m planning to read at least 2 books per month, fingers crossed I’ll make it…

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