Jil's Reviews > As a Friend

As a Friend by Forrest Gander
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Jul 26, 2010

really liked it
Recommended to Jil by: Nancy & Alex
Recommended for: lovers of poetry, Southern fiction readers, those looking for a quick read
Read on July 24, 2010

I took a translation class from Forrest last semester and he's absolutely brilliant and wonderful man. My boyfriend bought this because he also loved him as a professor, and his mother read it a couple weeks ago and RAVED about it. I decided I should, too.

It took no more than two hours to read this; other reviewers are right, in that it feels more like a short story than a novel. The writing is lovely, though there are a few instances that felt show-off-y to me -- in the way that a poet just can't contain his ability with language (and believe me, Forrest's got it -- his vocabulary, especially, is unrivaled).

The first two sections of the book felt much stronger to me, since they were poetic fiction rather than poetry posing as fiction. (Those interested might want to research Forrest's personal life, though -- the extent to which this is fiction is definitely unclear.)
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