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This book is as insufferable as the house guest that ties the book together. I got this book based on its awards and strong critical reviews but found the book an annoying slog. Smith uses devices that I usually enjoy in writting (streams of consiousness, multiple narratives, no real heavy plotting) but creates a book that just caused me to give a thousand mile stare when listening too.
Here are some of the problems I had with the book:
1) Characters are poorly introduced and you need to spend a large chunk of time figuring out where the fit into the plot rather than enjoying the story; a few characters and plot lines I just gave up on; some books are worth the effort of really trying to understand it; this is not one of them.
2) Streams of consiousness that go no where and speak like some trivia napkin or fortune cookie
3) the book seems to be in love with its own cleverness like Smith just discovered certain ideas in metafiction and narrative and decided to take it out for a test drive with little consequence or interesting results
This might be your cup of tea but I just found the book awful. The narrator also has a rather shrill tone of a school marm.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
What disappointed you about There but for the?
I stuck through this book, but it just didn't speak to me... Strange punctuation style, seemingly irrelevant stories that have a somewhat interesting twist of circular story telling. However, I must not be the target reader type for this book, I didn't love it.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful