Tuesday, September 10, 2013

All That Is

Episodes. It was well worth the wait. It’s been decades since there’s been a new novel from master craftsman James Salter. His new novel, All That Is, is the best novel I’ve read in a long time. Salter uses disjointed episodes in this life of protagonist Philip Bowman, to reveal the inconsistencies of our human condition. Bowman is a good guy and a bad guy, just like us. You can like him for some things he does, and hate him for others. We first meet Bowman on a ship at the end of World War II. That provides the introduction to Salter’s study of his contemporaries: men of the twentieth century, who came of age during war, and followed that experience with ups and downs, joys and screw-ups. Salter builds each sentence through choosing the perfect word every time. He presents aspects of the emptiness of life with a fullness of language. If there’s one novel you read this year, make it this one. Rating: Five-star (I love it) Click here to purchase All That Is from amazon.com.

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