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Lincoln in the Bardo
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Lincoln in the Bardo > Question #1: First impressions

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Lincoln in the Bardo is written in an unusual style and structure. What were your first impressions of the book?


Kate (arwen_kenobi) | 100 comments Mod
It took me little bit to get into the rhythm of things. I actually read about 20 pages, realised that I'd missed out on the fact that the speakers were identified by name after the text not before and actually restarted the book. I also had to suppress my urge to skim read during the parts that were extracts other texts. It was well worth starting again actually - and I even found reading aloud helped a lot. I'm actually waiting for the audiobook right now, something I usually don't do, because I'm curious to hear how it sounds.


message 3: by Susan (new) - added it

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
I wonder how the audio sounds, too, Kate! Apparently it's read by over 80 people. I wonder how the works are attributed to the authors on the audio - it must have been a challenge.

I loved the first chapter, and how it revealed Lincoln's character in treating his young wife with such respect. I wanted to know more!

If I hadn't known that some of the book takes place "in the bardo" before starting to read it, I would have been very confused by the scenes that take place there.

In terms of the text excerpts that are taken from other sources, I find it amazing how they tell a story and flow together! What a great amount of effort George Saunders must have put into writing this book. And what an imagination to come up with this idea!


message 4: by Shirley (last edited Jun 07, 2018 06:41AM) (new) - added it

Shirley Mytnowych | 57 comments Mod
I have to admit, the first day I started reading this book, I had nightmares that night. I could really put myself into the character of Lincoln and how he felt when his son became ill. I identified with when my son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 11 and it brought back all the fears I had then. It takes a very talented writer to evoke such feelings in the reader.


message 5: by Susan (new) - added it

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Shirley wrote: "I have to admit, the first day I started reading this book, I had nightmares that night. I could really put myself into the character of Lincoln and how he felt when his son became ill. I identifie..."
I agree, Shirley. The depth of the emotion that Lincoln felt is so well portrayed, and in so few words. Saunders is indeed a skilled writer. The book can be a very difficult and painful read at times.


Ashley | 116 comments Mod
I have to say my first impression was annoyance, thinking, "great, this is going to be confusing." So I made the decision to read reviews of the book after only a few pages, and quickly understood what the author was doing, and found reading much more pleasant.


message 7: by Maureen (new)

Maureen B. | 212 comments Managed to get my hands on a copy, although I have to admit, I wasn't too keen. It's nearly summer, after all, and who wants to be sitting in a crypt? Surprisingly, it's a rather wonderful book. I've only just started, found the beginning chapter confusing so I'll have to re-read, but otherwise I'm finding the structure really interesting and the content, although sad, far more humourous and hopeful than I'd thought possible.


message 8: by Susan (last edited Jun 14, 2018 07:59AM) (new) - added it

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Maureen wrote: "Managed to get my hands on a copy, although I have to admit, I wasn't too keen. It's nearly summer, after all, and who wants to be sitting in a crypt? Surprisingly, it's a rather wonderful book. I'..."

You couldn't have summed up my initial reactions to this book any more perfectly, Maureen! Thanks for your persistence in getting a copy.


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