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3.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  10,045 Ratings  ·  418 Reviews
When his closest friend, Benjamin Sachs, accidentally blows himself up on a Wisconsin road, Peter Aaron attempts to piece together the life that led to Sach's tragic demise and determine the reason for his death.
Mass Market Paperback, 245 pages
Published 1993 by Faber and Faber (first published 1992)
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Jimena No. He did write books about his life, but, as far as I know, Leviathan is not one of them.
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Ian Gabogovinanana

Fireworks Over Brooklyn

We're at a party in a modern bohemian fourth floor apartment in Brooklyn.

The guests include publishers, writers, artists, film-makers, musicians and various minders, acolytes and drummers disguised as waiters.

It’s July 4, 1981 (or is it 2003 or 2012 or all three, I don't know, the script doesn't say), barely twenty minutes before the fireworks are due to begin.

LYDIA DAVIS (who has just arrived, it’s her second party of t
Jeremy Zerbe
Oct 21, 2008 Jeremy Zerbe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can't remember the last time I read a book that was so emotionally draining as Paul Auster's Leviathan. I have been reading it at work for the last week or so, and finally in the home stretch of the last hundred pages today, I started walking around with my head down and my coworkers kept asking if I was okay. That's a feat to behold.

Auster's books are some of the most finely crafted works I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Maybe the stories don't always get wrapped up cleanly, or the ch
La historia que nos cuenta Paul Auster en ‘Leviatán’ (Leviathan, 1992), empieza por el final. El escritor Benjamin Sachs muere mientras manipulaba una bomba junto a una carretera. Es entonces cuando Peter Aaron, también escritor y alter ego del propio Auster, decide narrarnos la historia de su amigo Sachs, y de cómo ha llegado hasta esta situación.

Lo principal de la trama son sus personajes, las relaciones que se establecen entre ellos, los cambios y circunstancias por los que van pasando. Ademá
Sep 08, 2014 Blair rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you already like Paul Auster, you will definitely enjoy Leviathan, and if you dislike him or have a negative impression of his work, it's unlikely to be the book that will change your mind. Thisis, in many, many ways, textbook Auster. The author is a self-insert named Peter Aaron, a New-York based writer. The basic set-up isn't too different from that of Invisible: a man does or suffers a terrible thing, and the story consists of his friend, the narrator, looking back on the history of their ...more
Κορυφαίος Auster. Το τέταρτο 5άρι που του βάζω μετά την Τριλογία, τον Αόρατο και το Man in the Dark. Και το κέρδισε πολύ άνετα.
David Sweeney
Sep 07, 2012 David Sweeney rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW! WOW! WOW! No wonder Siri married him. I really think serious stalking in Brooklyn is a possibility my next trip to New York. I utterly ADORED this book. Complete satisfaction. It is not a very long book but it is incredibly dense and the narrative moves along at a good clip. This is the fourth Paul Auster I have read this year and none have been the same. BUT BUT I strongly suspect that this may not be for everyone. It is almost review proof because you really can't say much about the plot. ...more
Noura Tan
Dec 06, 2013 Noura Tan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It took me a while to figure out what I felt towards to this book or rather a way to articulate it into some sort of coherent review. I should start by saying that Auster changed a lot of my perspectives throughout this book (nah, not revolutionary stuff). Auster delves into these characters so deeply and invests in their habits, attitudes, feelings so much we can't help but forget that it is but a work of fiction but there was so much detail paid to these characters (and what beautiful characte ...more
For me the tale did not merit the lengthy narrative, the book within the book seemed contrived and interfered with the tension. I felt it was too much blathering and was in need of editing. Perhaps it's a case of not being able to latch on to either of the main male characters as sympathetic or interesting. The female protagonists started out as more captivating particularly since I'd seen museum exhibits of Sophie Calle and immediately recognized her in Maria but they were reduced to pretty muc ...more
Sep 16, 2010 Azra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
می توانم بگویم در تمام لحظاتی که کتاب را می خواندم، مسخ شده بودم. هر خط از داستان یک بمب کوچک بود که در ذهنم پیش فرض ها را منفجر می کرد. آستر به معنای واقعی کلمه در مورد " انسان " می نویسد و رابطه ی او را با جهان تصادف ها به شکلی منظم پیش چشم خواننده تصویر می کند. طوری که عجیب ترین و نادرالوقوع ترین اتفاقات، امری بدیهی جلوه می کنند. و آن چه به نظر من خارق العاده می آید، درست بعد از تحقیر باورهای پیشین اتفاق می افتد؛ " کشف حقیقت "
اشتیاق بی پایان و فزاینده ای در من هست که می خواهم ساعت ها و روزها
Mar 20, 2015 Luxor rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Sólo me faltaba un capítulo para terminar pero no he podido continuar. Lo he intentado muchas veces con este autor pero si exceptuamos la Trilogía de Nueva York y a ratos Invisible y el Libro de las ilusiones todo lo demás me ha resultado falso, superficial, incluso cursi. Siempre recordaré Leviatán como el libro que me hizo decidir no volver a leer nada más de Paul Auster.
Nov 03, 2014 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mainstream
Un amigo me dijo hace tiempo que Paul Auster hacía las historias más simples del mundo y que de ahí su éxito. Este es el segundo libro suyo que devoro y no estoy de acuerdo. Creo que en este en concreto, su gran mérito es crear una historia muy compleja (más incluso en la creación de personajes que en situaciones) y hacer que parezca sencilla.

Crear unos personajes tan peculiares, hacerlos creíbles, forzar situaciones para describirnos sus vidas hacia un rumbo ya anunciado pero bastante inexplic
Jan 21, 2016 Ana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, z-sxl, c-usa
"Six days ago, a man blew himself up by the side of a road in Wisconsin."
Assim começa este Leviathan. A história é contada na primeira pessoa por Peter Aaron, um escritor, que, ao tomar conhecimento daquela notícia, imediatamente percebe que ela diz respeito ao seu melhor amigo: o também escritor Benjamin Sachs, personagem central deste romance. Começando por nos revelar um desfecho, o autor estrutura a narrativa de modo a manter o interesse do leitor relativamente aos acontecimentos e às mot
Jeff Sorensen
Apr 19, 2012 Jeff Sorensen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I always mistakenly think this was the first book I ever read by Paul Auster. It wasn't. Moon Palace was. I do remember reading an advance copy of this that I pulled off the shelves of the publisher I worked for at the time. It felt like I was stealing, though he wouldn't have cared, and couldn't have ever known I did that unless I told him. By chance, the day I placed it back on the shelf, the publisher gave it & that Sun & Moon Press book The Art of Hunger to one of the staff members t ...more
Bindu Manoj
Oct 09, 2013 Bindu Manoj rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Six days ago, a man blew himself up by the side of a road in Wisconsin,"

thus starts the gripping tale of Benjamin Sachs. There are books that make you cry, ones that make you smile and sometimes laugh, some make you think and a few that refuse to leave your mind. Then there are those rare ones that leave you with a haunting , disturbing feeling that is beyond any definition. And this is one of those rare ones.

As soon as author Paul Aaron catches the news item in The New York Times, he is absolu
Nakwan sriaru
Jul 23, 2015 Nakwan sriaru rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
เปนภาพชีวิตแสดงทีมา จากปัญญาชนใฝสันติ ทีมุงสูการเปนนักกอวินาศกรรม สนุกตรงการประกอบสรางจากชินสวนตางๆ ทีประกอบเปนชีวิตมีเลือดเนือจิตใจของนักเขียน ดวยบุคลิกทีเปียมเสนห รางสูงใหญ แตงตัวไมเปน ไวเครารกเรือ และเขียนนิยายอันทะเยอทะยาน

ประกอบกันเหตุการณในชีวิตทีเปนความโกลาหลบังเอิญอยางวิปลาส อยางที มิลาน คุนเดอรา เขียนถึงในเลม อมตะ

หนังสือบอกเรากลายๆ วา ฝายซายมีจุดจบแบบนีแหละ ไมวินาสดวยเรืองเซกสและครอบครัว กวินาสดวยการลงเอยดวยการทำลายตัวเอง.. ฝายซายไมมีวันชนะ เพราะทันทีทีชนะเขาจะกลายเปนขวา
Jul 08, 2015 Isart rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Esta es la cuarta novela que leo de Paul Auster y para mí queda en un segundo nivel junto a 'La trilogía de Nueva York'. En el primero están 'El libro de las ilusiones' y 'Brooklyn Follies' que por su historia o por X motivos me llegaron más y me parecen superiores. Al menos esta es mi visión a día de hoy acerca de su obra.

Pero en cualquier caso en 'Leviatán' también están las constantes habituales de su estilo y es una novela que no defraudará a sus seguidores. Su historias aparentemente cotidi
I love Auster, and "The New York Trilogy" is probably up there in my top ten books. But "Leviathan" left me deeply unsatisfied. Overall, the structure did not work for me, and while some of the themes and tropes are vintage Auster this time they didn't coalesce.

There was a lot in here, as Sachs trashes one part of his life after another in some search of who-knows-what (success? identity? self-respect?) that just felt repetitive and monotonous. It's not that Sachs is unlikable, but something wo
Feb 10, 2012 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Elegant Examination Of One Character's Descent Into Madness

Noted Brooklyn, New York-based novelist Paul Auster is in fine form in his novel "Leviathan", which can be regarded as an interesting, highly literate, example of crime fiction which ought to resonate with anyone interested in seeing a character's descent into madness. In this early 1990s novel, Auster has cast himself as a fictional doppelganger, the novelist Peter Aaron, who witnesses the gradual descent into madness by his best friend
Jim Elkins
Nov 24, 2013 Jim Elkins rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american
This is, by most people's account, a minor novel of Auster's, and so it may be an especially go one to raise the question of what drives the work, as opposed to what happens when the writing succeeds in some more specific way. This book has a kind of unremitting literalism in its narrative. In a nearly blank, neutral voice, the narrator tells us dozens of dates, places, and names; in part that's justified by the notion that this is a book written at speed in order to provide legal evidence about ...more
I loved almost all of the characters and it was a great narrative. This was my first Paul Auster book and I enjoyed it very much. The connections between the characters were great. I admit it started strong and then slowed a bit but this book manages to draw you in. I loved how complex his characters are and how he perfectly kept rambling then all these things came around together and lead to Sachs's fall. I think I will be thinking about Maria Turner for a while :) I can't wait to read Auster's ...more
Jan 09, 2013 Jas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The surprise reading and then finishing the book is that you really never know what you're gonna get. What is neatly set up as a detective crime story in the initial pages starts taking you through a completely different course. The premise is still to find out what happened but the truth is it is about understanding what happened.

It is an examination of the human condition clothed under the wolf cover of a simple detective story. And I don't know which one is the more dangerous and hungry or m
I really enjoyed this book. It was a very quick read, but the story and the writing were compelling.

Peter Aaron, a writer, tells this story of his best friend Benjamin Sachs, also a writer. The book starts with Peter telling us about Ben's death in the 1990's -- he accidently blew himself to pieces on the side of a road in Wisconsin while making a bomb -- and how Peter has to write Ben's story before the authorities figure out who the dead man is. Then Peter starts at the beginning -- how he an
Jul 31, 2015 Waltinho rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Es un gran libro, de los mejores de Paul Auster. Tiene grandes personajes y unos arcos muy interesantes. Sin embargo, no me creo al protagonista de esta novela: Sachs. Su comportamiento, mejor dicho, sus múltiples comportamientos diferentes a lo largo del libro, son de una persona, que francamente, no creo que exista. Es verdad que hay de todo en el mundo, pero Sachs no. Sachs carece de lógica.

Otro puntito negativo del libro es que decae en su parte final. Mantiene un nivel altísimo hasta el últ
Elham Ghafarzadeh
این سومین کتابی ِ که از پل استر می خوندم... خیلی عالی شروع شده و با توجه به تجربهای که از خوندن آثار پل استر بدست آوردم کافیه طاقت آورد تا صفحات 70 اینا و بعد از اون به هیچ وجه نمیشه دیگه کتاب رو بست. به حدی مهیج میشه که گذر زمان رو نمیشه اصلا متوجه شد...
به نظرم پل استر خیلی عالی تونسته تمام شخصیتها رو بهم ربط بده و خیلی زیبا موقعیتهای پیچیده رو توصیف کرده...
A novel that I really enjoyed. I was fascinated and surprised by the way the characters think and act, like they are full of kindness but they lack a strong sense of morality. For some characters life is a winning game, for others it seems like an everyday battle with their self. At some point, it seemed that losing their way in life was a punishment they were willing to accept.
It is also a novel that surprises very well the struggle of authors to awake the ideas that are so well hidden in thei
Apr 15, 2015 Jay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was torn between five stars and fours stars and in the end chose four because there's something missing; not that it has to have an end, a conclusion and explanation but rather that throughout the book something is always not there that needs to be there to get five stars. I think that something is an understandable motivation of the primary character of interest. One explanation is that he went insane, but if that is the case, then that is not explained; another could be that things simply ha ...more
Alan Chen
Jul 29, 2014 Alan Chen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love Paul Auster and this novel while not as good as some of his other works (New York Trilogy, Moon Palace) is still a gem. The story is by Peter Aaron about his best friend Oliver Sachs. It chronicles how they meet until the day Sachs blew himself up into pieces. The story has many twists of chance that comprises a person's life and it delineates how Sachs goes from writer and husband to a person that will blow up monuments in the name of social causes. In it we learn just as much about the ...more
Mark Hennion
Nov 30, 2014 Mark Hennion rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literary, favorites
A reviewer from New York Time Magazine is blurbed inside the trade edition of Leviathan saying that this book is "Auster's most accessible, engaging book." I often roll my eyes at most of the blurbs and reviews given to my favorite authors, most often I suppose because one actually wonders whether the reviewer actually read the book and gave it more than the barest treatment to prepare a review.

In this case, my opinion falters. Leviathan is Auster's best work, and I feel a far better word than a
Als Fan von Paul Austers Fabulierkunst hat mir dieser Roman bisher am wenigsten gefallen. Dabei ist er sprachlich und erzählerisch wieder in gewohnt grossartiger Qualität, wenn auch die Geschichte etwas unwahrscheinlich weit hergeholt und schräg ist. Macht nix ich mag schräge Gschichtln schliesslich ist Lesen pure Fiktion. Aber diese unsäglichen Rückblenden.... nicht dass ich prinzipiell etwas gegen Rückblenden hätte... Sie stören mich nicht, wenn sie eingesetzt werden, um die Vergangenheit zu e ...more
Jan 01, 2010 Tim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Paul Auster's Leviathan], like most of his other work, hinges largely on chance and coincidental relationships. At the same time, this novel is much more fatalistic than his other work, mostly due to the frequent use of foreshadowing including the start of the book in which it is revealed that Benjamin Sachs, the character that the book focuses on, has recently blown himself up accidentally.

Leviathan is an interesting title for a couple of reasons. The more obvious reason for this title is as a
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Paul Auster is the bestselling author of Report from the Interior, Winter Journal, Sunset Park, Invisible, The Book of Illusions, and The New York Trilogy, among many other works. He has been awarded the Prince of Asturias Prize for Literature, the Prix Médicis Étranger, the Independent Spirit Award, and the Premio Napoli. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the American Ac ...more
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