Nick's Reviews > The Reserve

The Reserve by Russell Banks
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's review
Apr 24, 2010

liked it
bookshelves: literary
Read in April, 2010

Having read earlier Banks' novels, I grabbed this audiobook off the shelves with little advance knowledge, little prejudice. I confess to enjoying the big narrative set pieces, the clearly defined characters, the propulsive romantic plot, and especially the setting: an Adirondack nature preserve for rich people in the late 30's. Somewhere in the middle of the story I kept wondering, what does this remind me of? -- but it was only after reading a couple of scathing reviews online after completing it that I realized what it was: Banks seems to have channeled Ayn Rand... his politics are radical, rather than libertarian, but in terms of "big" emotions and the melodramatic sweep of rather goofy and improbably characters and plot, both authors leave me with the feeling I get after a good theme park ride. A little breathless, a little nauseous, and eager to move on.

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