Michelle's Reviews > The Yellow Birds

The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers
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Sep 29, 12

bookshelves: 2012, contemporary-fiction
Read from September 24 to 29, 2012

Beautifully written book but very hard to latch onto the characters. The protagonist is a young Army private home from Iraq, though much of the book takes place in Iraq itself. It almost feels like a first person plural narrative for reasons I cannot explain. Maybe because though he experiences (and experienced) horrific events he does not deem himself unique.

The setting, his feelings, they’re all described magnificently. It’s no surprise the author is a poet. That said, there wasn’t really a plot here and only like three characters, zero development. One reviewer said this isn’t really a novel and that’s quite apt. It reads more like the memoir of a guy trying to come to grips with a friend’s death. I can see why people might find it profound but as a so-called “novel” this just didn’t do it for me.
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