Mikey's Reviews > The Plot Against America

The Plot Against America by Philip Roth
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24801
's review
Mar 24, 2007

really liked it
bookshelves: fiction
Recommended for: history buffs
Read in November, 2004

Philip Roth's The Plot Against America is a solid effort from arguably America's greatest living author. Although it doesn't stand up compared to his best work, the alternative history presented - one in which Charles Lindbergh beat FDR for the 1940 presidency, the USA signed a peace treaty with Nazi Germany, and anti-Semitism has spread widely through mainstream American culture - is chillingly plausible. The story is presented as a fictional autobiography of Philip Roth in this world, and Roth's personal accounts of the rise of American anti-Semitism have the realism of actual memoir. The novel has been criticized in some circles as being anti-Catholic and anti-Middle America, but that criticism views The Plot Against America through twenty-first century eyes. The truth of the matter is that before the Holocaust became widely known, anti-Semitism was not considered a major taboo like it is now, and it's not difficult to imagine an alternative history in which such attitudes could be pervasive. Though the novel drags in some parts, and has a silly deus ex machina ending, The Plot Against America is a good, engaging read.
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