J. Travis Moger's Reviews > Gould's Book of Fish: A Novel in Twelve Fish

Gould's Book of Fish by Richard Flanagan
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Jul 24, 12

Read from July 03 to 24, 2012

Gould's Book of Fish: A Novel in Twelve Fish is a witty, bawdy, irreverent tour de force of satire that tells the story of William Buelow “Billy” Gould, who was sentenced to life in prison on the infamous Sarah Island, off the coast of Tasmania—the harshest penal colony of the early nineteenth-century British Empire. While imprisoned Gould paints fish for the prison’s naturalist surgeon, and the fish he paints become the organizing principle of the book. If you liked Voltaire’s Candide, you’ll appreciate Flanagan’s Gould’s Books of Fish. I didn’t, so I don’t. Still, I can applaud its literary merit. Richard Flanagan is a Tasmanian devil of an author.
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