Monday, January 13, 2014

& Sons

Ampersand. David Gilbert constructed a 450 page literary novel titled, & Sons, around the word, “and.” You can see it in the ampersand of the title, and in the three letters in white on the book jacket. Inside, Ampersand is the title of a novel by protagonist A.N. Dyer, whose monogram also reads, “and.” Dyer’s lifelong friend, Charles Topping, dies at the beginning of the novel, leading Dyer to confront his own mortality. The action of the novel centers on Dyer’s attempt to bring together the lives of his older sons from his first marriage to their half-brother, whose birth caused that marriage to dissolve. Gilbert creates many sentences that I read more than once with pleasure. I enjoyed the ways in which he deconstructed the relationship between fathers and sons, the bonds of friendship, literary life in New York, and the longing for legacy. There’s a lot of “and” in this novel that will appeal most to those readers who love literary fiction. Rating: Four-star (I like it) Click here to purchase & Sons from

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