Dy's Take

August 12, 2011

Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon

Filed under: Book Club,Skip It — Dy @ 23:38

Await Your Reply(62)

2 of 5 stars

I stayed up late to slog through the end of this for my book club. Honestly?  Sleeping would have been a much better use of my time.

I kept waiting for the convergence of story lines that the flap copy promised. I think the person who wrote the flap copy read a different book because the plotlines never really converged. What we got at the end was a throwaway interior monologue by the object of everyone’s affection — just in case we hadn’t figured it out yet the author laid it all out.

I will confess, though, that my biggest pet peeve with this mess of text was the nonlinear storytelling (combined with the repetition in certain areas, particularly in Ryan’s story). I like nontraditional when it works, but this was so convoluted that it just didn’t. I had to lay out a timeline in my head to figure out who was the last person to see the mystery man, and, frankly, neither the plot, characters, or themes were compelling enough to make me work that hard to figure it out.

Also, not a fan of the violence and, well, dirt. They didn’t really add much to the story and I felt like it was cheaply used to get people to jump in and see why things began the way they did.

Overall, I feel my time would have been better spent reading something else and would not recommend this clunker.


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