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Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever?

3.53 of 5 stars 3.53  ·  rating details  ·  3,332 ratings  ·  579 reviews
From Dave Eggers, best-selling author of The Circle, a tightly controlled, emotionally searching novel. Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? is the formally daring, brilliantly executed story of one man struggling to make sense of his country, seeking answers the only way he knows how.

In a barracks on an abandoned military base, miles from
Hardcover, 212 pages
Published June 17th 2014 by Knopf (first published June 1st 2014)
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Jun 27, 2014 David rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Kidnappers, people who like dialogue
I liked it? God, I suck at trying to explain why I like a particular book. There's this lady who comes into my work and she always asks me what I'm reading. She's really only asking me this so she can tell me what she has been reading, but I always feel obligated to tell her about the books I've been reading. She is incredible at explaining the good and bad points of books and most of the time I end up borrowing whatever she suggests. But me, I am shit and she knows it. It's all in the eyes peop ...more
People seem to hear that this one has a long and unrememberable title, involves an astronaut, and that it's "all dialogue" -- and think it's gonna be "weird." I was one of those people: at first I heard that the new Eggers novel, the third in as many years, took place at a Japanese internment/concentration camp. And then I heard something about astronauts and all dialogue, that it's (mistakenly) more of a return to his early Velocity days. Eggers has described the book as sort of a weird stepson ...more
Andrew Campbell
This isn't fiction, it's op-ed wankery. After The Circle and this, I now have no interest in Eggers' next book. It makes me wonder: when's the last time anybody said to him, "Hey Dave? This isn't very good."
Okay. I love Dave Eggers. I can't help it. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius is probably still my all-time favorite book, and I love What is the What and Zeitoun, and I love the work he does with McSweeney's and 826 and Voices of Witness. Love it.

But the problem is I think over the last few years (as he enters middle-aged white dude status) Dave Eggers has been on some kind of quest to see if he can make the struggles of middle-class white dudes as interesting as like, refugees and tragi
For a superior novel about man-eating crabs, please read:
Carmen Petaccio
"What do you want to build? The world is already built."

"So I just walk around in an already built world? That's a joke."

"That's the joke you live in."
I LOVED IT!!!! Enormously provocative and hilarious.
The first half of the book, my husband and I read aloud together. (we were having a blast --stopping and having discussions) --- I finished the last half myself after he went to sleep.

Several negative reviews???? I do NOT AGREE!!! This book allows for DISCUSSION ---
Its too thin of a book to share much or give much away. Its best just reading it. It will only take a few hours of your time: FULLY WORTH the CREATIVE experience!!!!!

Here are a 'f
I have so many problems with this book.

First of all the name is really misleading i thought this book was gonna be about religion? If you want to sell actual copies of this book change the name to "The People I Kidnapped and Why I am A Narcissistic Asshole with Grandiose Delusions". The book is entirely about man pain. Literally that's the book. And if it was written from the point of view where its like, yes, this guys an asshole, and were trying to show you that, and why its bad, i could have
Jessica Woodbury
I've read a lot of Dave Eggers books. (I used to own 3 different versions of SACRAMENT.) In some ways this is a return to form of some of his earlier novels. Loose, strange, not in search of any greater good but just there to tell an unusual story with unusual characters. And as much as I adore WHAT IS THE WHAT and his ambitious fiction, I can't deny the enjoyment of reading YOUR FATHERS, WHERE ARE THEY? and how quickly I was able to dash through it.

It is hard to review this book, it certainly d
I don't understand why so maybe people hated this book. I thought writing in all dialogue was interesting. Challenging to some, maybe, but we were told where they were, what it was like. We knew. I'm not a man. But I understood his plight. I don't think it was about middle aged white entitlement. I think he could have been any color, really. It was about people who have this feeling of displacement. That they have this energy, this something inside them that isn't exactly destructive but not exa ...more
I read this as I was flying into a place that was unknown to myself; love and retrieval of the future was my main focus and I succeeded in both and for that, I will always be thankful.

Now…my thoughts with this book and author.

Rating would have to be closer to a 3.5.

Dave Eggers is an interesting one. He always tends to bring up national/international issues within his books, but with a quirky sense of satire mixed in. With his newest “Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live
Bob Lopez
It was written with urgency; unfortunately, it's a kind of condescending urgency you would find in a college application essay where the kid thinks he should get into an Ivy League school but really probably belongs at a Tier 2 institution. Smug and self-satisfied, preachy
Leo Robertson
Ahahaha!! That was one of the worst things I've read in a while.

You know, like it's all dialogue, which I guess is a technique he's partly biting from William Gaddis, who obviously did it wayyyy better! I was at least looking forward to a mess of speakers all at once but it's just one guy who pairs off folk and talks to them one-on-one, which makes it much easier to write than a novel written in standard form with even a single scene with many people in the same room, so it's far from daringly w
1.5 stars

Easily the worst of Eggers' offerings I've read so far, YFWAT?ATPDTLF? is another effort of his to champion a "cause", and rally for the rights of the disenfranchised. Unlike vastly superior efforts like What is the What and Zeitoun, this time Eggers tries humorless Palahniuk-y gimmickry coupled with limp Mamet-esque theatrics to deliver his message. As my political viewpoints are similarly aligned to his, Eggers is preaching to the choir, but thanks to an utter lack of subtlety and (cu
Madaline Reddy
Jul 03, 2014 Madaline Reddy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Alexandra Reddy
Recommended to Madaline by: Toby
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
At least it was slightly more interesting (and a lot shorter) than The Circle.
Jul 15, 2014 jim rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to jim by: no one
If it was only for A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, I think I would still be blindly buying just about anything that Eggers writes. That I loved What is the What, You Shall Know Our Velocity, and We Are Hungry just solidifies his status as one of my favorite authors, so despite thinking that both Hologram for the King and The Circle were two of the weaker entries in his oeuvre I was excited to add Your Fathers… to my shopping cart without reading either (yes, that’s with a long “i”) sy ...more
I guess the last three books by Dave Eggers could be considered a thematic trilogy; all of them seem to be trying to put their thumb on the current status of America. They are observant yet barbed works of fiction that in no way regard the United States as the "Land of the Free".

What sets this third book apart from "Hologram for the King" and "The Circle" is its form. Written entirely in dialogue, one could look at this as a script for a play or film, except there are no descriptions of setting
Steve Lively
WOW! this book is absolutely incredible! While Eggers abandons many fiction writing norms, he in turn has cleared away all the muck and has presented readers with a bare bones announcement (manifesto?) of the New Lost Generation. While exploring the perspectives of various characters under differing levels of stress, he successfully jars readers to pay attention and wake up to this seedy world in which we live. We can no longer just pine for simpler times---we must live in our day and deal with ...more
Imagine Holden Caulfield all grown up, but 1000 times more impotent and whiny. This is the main character of this book. It starts with an interesting premise, but slowly just becomes a platform for complaining about the unfairness of life. Good grief, I've never hated a protagonist more, and not in a good way.

Since the book is entirely dialogue, clumsy attempts are made to fill the reader in on what is happening. He's kidnapped an astronaut--how do you know this? Because he exclaims to himself
lotta reviewers here crapping about how it's all dialogue, or how parts of it stretch credulity, or about how it's a long whine about white-boy privilege... ya, sort of. but.

the central issue of the book--which i take to be about how the US has abandoned the idea of doing anything Big (like going to space) and thus left generations of young, bright men with nothing heroic to do--well, it may not have the emotional punch of more desperate needs, but that doesn't make it meaningless. a writer can
Poor Dave. He's gotten slated pretty hard core for this one. Yes, it's a bit preachy. Yes, it doesn't really seem to focus around any one point - the spoiled entitlement of the younger generation- inherent pointlessness of modern life- government waste- trigger-happy cops - long enough to make them really well or join them all into a coherent whole but goddammit if I didn't enjoy reading it anyway (3.5 stars if I could give the half points).

The all dialogue format has put some people off (and p
What a fantastic and fun ride! This is my first David Eggers book. I will have to read more in the near future.
A middle-aged man kidnaps 6 people and takes them to an old army barracks where he questions them, trying to make sense out of his life and societies craziness.
The first part of the book has a sense of foreboding. He seems intent on his quest for answers. And you're wondering how far he will go to get them. Though the first kidnapping is well planned, he soon devolves. Kidnapping anot
I haven't been this conflicted about a book in a while; although, having never read Dave Eggers, I really had no idea what to expect from this novel. The title is what really caught my attention, so I figured this was as good an introduction as any to an author I've been meaning to read for quite a while now.

This story centers around a deeply troubled man, Thomas, who begins the novel by kidnapping an astronaut, holding him captive at a secluded, abandoned army base in California for the purpose
The first time I've read Eggers and I'm somewhat on the fence about the experience. In its favour, this dialogue-only novel is a real page-turner (I whipped through its 211 pages in about four hours) and Eggers manages to make all the voices both believable and distinct from each other. The structure is fun too, as Thomas, an angry and rather unbalanced man, kidnaps, ties up and questions in turn: an astronaut who, having jumped through all the necessary hoops to attain his goal of going on the ...more
Alex V.
Thomas is the everyman. The passenger. The victim to crimes being perpetrated on others. He is also a one-man Guantanamo. But he is also immortal in a way, maybe in every way one can be immortal. He at least gets people to remember him. He is certain he is on the side of morality. He is piteous and kind of a drag like all moral immortals and angry young men. He is doomed and bringing that doom to him as if he left a trail of crumbs.

Without spoiling anything, this is a book of dialogs Thomas has
Po Po
Sep 01, 2014 Po Po added it
Short book, long on negativity.

I didn't like it. I like it.

The kidnapper is a psychopath, yet he hits upon this truth:

You can play by the rules, and do everything "they" tell you to do, but it doesn't guarantee success -- because "they" will suddenly change the rules and will move the finish line so you may never reach it.

Sara, the veterinarian, is the least likable character. She actually believes the system is fair.

It seems Eggers has a lengthy laundry list of grievances with American society
Ali Al-Khalifa
A confused and frustrated man in his thirties kidnaps an astronaut (and several others) to seek answers to his existential problems. Presented entirely through dialogue, the story represents the angst and struggles of young American men in their search for fulfillment and purpose in life. Thomas, the kidnapper, is easily the least likable protagonist that I’ve encountered in years. He is a whinny man-child who blames everyone for his failures and refuses to take responsibility for his choices an ...more
I'm a huge Dave Eggers fan - started with "Heartbreaking Work . . .". His books are well written, ingenious, thoughtful and thought-provoking. This, his newest novel, did not disappoint.

Grade: A
Well, we all know I feel the same way about Dave Eggers as I do about all my favourite authors (I'd read their grocery lists) but how much I love his books varies dramatically. So far Hologram for the King is the only one I've gone "meh" to but with every one since then I've been a bit on edge in case it too is disappointing.

Thankfully this one, which at 200 pages isn't much longer than the very long title, was read in just a couple of short bursts. In part this is because it's immensely readab
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Dave Eggers is the author of ten books, including most recently Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever?, The Circle and A Hologram for the King, which was a finalist for the 2012 National Book Award. He is the founder of McSweeney’s, an independent publishing company based in San Francisco that produces books, a quarterly journal of new writing (McSweeney’s Quarterly ...more
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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius What is the What The Circle Zeitoun You Shall Know Our Velocity!

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“You see pictures of Buddha and he’s sitting, reclining, at peace. The Hindus have their twelve-armed elephant god, who also seems so content but not powerless. But leave it to Christians to have a dead and bloody man nailed to a cross.” 13 likes
“–Don’t you think the vast majority of the chaos in the world is caused by a relatively small group of disappointed men?

–I don’t know. Could be.
–The men who haven’t gotten the work they expected to get. The men who don’t get the promotion they expected. The men who are dropped in a jungle or a desert and expected video games and got mundanity and depravity and friends dying like animals. These men can’t be left to mix with the rest of society. Something bad always happens.”
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