Jed's Reviews > The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh

The Mysteries Of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon
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's review
Dec 28, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: fiction
Read 2 times. Last read December 27, 2009.

I always used to say that The Mysteries of Pittsburgh was one of my favorite novels; yet, I had read it only once, in the summer of 1989, when I was 20 years old.

Well, I've just finished it again, in the early winter of 2009, when I am 40 years old. I'm so sorry to say that I don't love it nearly as much as I did then. I can see why I liked it back then, though.

The Mysteries of Pittsburgh is a charming, young-adult novel with ambi-sexual romance, intrigue, organized crime and the general pointlessness of life as seen through the lens of any Generation Xer upon graduation from college. The inescapable problem is that I'm all grown up and I no longer find the characters, or their concerns, particularly relevant to my life in the way I had back then. I've seen enough of these "kinds of people" to know that whatever profound pronouncements they might invent based on their limited life-experience will probably fall away as they grow up.

I still look back to the summer of 1989 with the same fondness and awe as I can look to Chabon's debut novel and remember the turbulence that came with my own 20-something observations about the meaning of the experiences of my life.

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