Saturday, July 28, 2007

Review of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon

A wonderful book about New York City, city of dreams fulfilled, comic books, . Josef Kavalier, an artist, escapes from Prague in 1939, leaving behind his Jewish family. Sam Klayman, his Brooklyn-born cousin has stories in his brain and ambition for a better life. They combine their talents to create The Escapist, a superhero who rescues the downtrodden. But its the characters and setting that make this book sing and reverberate in the reader's mind. NYC is that idyllic town of black and white MGM heartwarming movies, where everyone is memorable, wise-cracking and slightly eccentric. This reminded me somewhat of Two O'Clock, Eastern Wartime by John Dunning, with its bittersweet nostalgia for a time gone by and its lost possibilities. Joe fights Hitler through his drawings, but the impending doom and sorrow is palpable. Sammy is just a fabulously three dimensional character with a life so different from what he imagined it would be in 1939. Kavalier and Clay was a book I could not put down and a world that I didn't want to leave.
I highly recommend it to others.

Winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for fiction

Powell's interview with Mr. Chabon

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