Catherine Howard's Reviews > The Age of Miracles

The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker
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's review
Jul 22, 2012

it was amazing
Read in July, 2012

I LOVED this book. Although I had heard about the story—the Earth's rotation begins to slow, increasing the length of each day, first by minutes, then by hours—I hadn't realized that that is just the background, and the real focus of this book is a family, namely 11-year-old Julia and her parents. The live in a suburb of Southern California, and we watch as their lives change as the world around them changes too, at first shifting slightly, but soon becoming unrecognizable.

This is a book about so many things—love, belonging, loneliness, religion, discrimination, the passage of time, growing up—that you'll find yourself thinking about it long after you've finished reading it, which I think is a true sign of a great book. The writing is deceptively simple and uncluttered; Walker doesn't need any flowery language or literary acrobatics to draw us into her fictional world—and yet, a few times, I found my heart caught on one of her sentences. The ending was both a surprise and inevitable, and both heartbreaking and hopeful. A great idea for a novel, expertly executed.

Walker apparently wrote The Age of Miracles in the mornings before she left for work (she was an editor), but presumably she doesn't have to do that now that she's received a six-figure deal for this. If this is what she can squeeze in around a full-time job, I can't wait to see what she can do when she has the whole day to write! :-)
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