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Moonglow by Michael Chabon
  

Moonglow

Literary Fiction   Books for the Boys   Family Drama   Reading Groups   eBook Favourites   Relationship Stories   

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Absolutely fascinating, a beautiful yet quirky read, this is a tale to make you wonder, to make you feel… A grandfather, on his deathbed, tells his grandson about his life, from rocket ships to prison, from love to aching for revenge, all is revealed. The story isn't released in sequence, instead it flits around in time, I was initially thrown but soon got used to, even welcomed the sudden disturbance to the storyline. Michael Chabon writes with an understated, elegant, yet wickedly spiky hand. There were times when I lost myself in the words that danced across the pages, others when I was brought up short, shocked and surprised. The author’s note at the beginning suggests there is a connection to his family, the acknowledgment at the end gives source to information, how much is actually true though, isn't revealed, but I have fallen in love with the memories scattered on the page. In the vast open thrilling space of ‘Moonglow’ is a wonderfully intimate collection of meandering, amusing, achingly sad, and truly fabulous stories. ~ Liz Robinson

If you like Michael Chabon you might also like to read books by Richard Ford, Patrick Neate and John Lanchester.

Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Ed Robson - 'Moonglow is a triumph of narrative fiction in the tradition of character-driven, post-war Jewish American storytelling.'
  • Edel Waugh - 'a fine story about a life lived to the fullest and it left me with plenty to think of long after finishing it.'
  • Annette Woolfson - 'There is magic in the writing and in the slow unfolding of the story of a remarkable man, living in remarkable times. But at its core it is a story of love, a story beautifully told.'
  • Humaira Kauser - 'From the narrative voice to the assortment of characters, this book just packs a punch with gloriousness.  What a wonderful and heartfelt book.'
  • Jane Brown - 'Every so often a book comes your way that is so endearing and you think this is why I read and love reviewing books and ‘Moonglow’ is just that.'  
  • Lucy Bunce - 'Taking in themes from the space race to the holocaust, this is a work of fiction which makes the reader rethink facts.'
  • Jo-anne Atkinson - 'The story of a Jewish man in the 20th Century - written as a biography but purely fiction.  A tale that encompasses crime, war and mental health but linked by an obsession with space travel.'
  • Phylippa Smithson - 'This had such potential - grandfather revealing to his grandson his past lived during some of the most remarkable times of recent US history – but was disjointed and left me disappointed.'
  • Peter Mynehan - 'Quite a difficult read with a difficult concept.'
  • Andrea Rayner - 'a rich tapestry of characters and events from the latter half of the twentieth century.'
  • Angela Rhodes - 'Michael Chabon's latest book will keep the reader glued and entertained.'
  • Tina Tse - 'A book that lays out the human condition, exploring the different truths that make up our lives.'
  • Alfred Nobile - 'This was a book I really struggled with...........Not that the writing wasn't good. It was...But the rambling way the narrative was told really grated on me.'

Synopsis

Moonglow by Michael Chabon

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER. A New York Times Notable Book of the Year * A Washington Post Book of the Year * An NPR Book of the Year * A Wall Street Journal Book of the Year * A Slate Book of the Year

'The world, like the Tower of Babel or my grandmother's deck of cards, was made out of stories, and it was always on the verge of collapse.' Moonglow unfolds as a deathbed confession. An old man, his tongue loosened by powerful painkillers, his memory stirred by the imminence of death, tells stories to his grandson, uncovering bits and pieces of a history long buried. Why did he try to strangle a former business partner with a telephone cord? What was he thinking when he and a buddy set explosives on a bridge in Washington, D.C.? What did he feel while he hunted down Wernher von Braun in Germany? And what did he see in the young girl he met in Baltimore after returning home from the war? From the Jewish slums of pre-war Philadelphia to the invasion of Germany, from a Florida retirement village to the penal utopia of a New York prison, from the heyday of the space programme to the twilight of `the American Century', Moonglow collapses an era into a single life and a lifetime into a single week.

Reviews

`Entirely sure footed, propulsive, the work of a master at his very best. The brilliance of Moonglow stands as a strident defence of the form itself, a bravura demonstration of the endless mutability and versatility of the novel' Observer

`The product of a writer in full command of his novelistic faculties ... Not only probably Chabon's greatest, but an example of a piece of sustained writing that will be hard to see outdone in 2017 The Times

`Funny, moving and tremendously entertaining, this is a novel about the narratives we construct for ourselves and the need we have for them, one that confirms Chabon not just as an irresistible tale-teller, but also a master' Daily Mail

`A masterclass in storytelling' Independent

`Entirely sure footed, propulsive, the work of a master at his very best. The brilliance of Moonglow stands as a strident defence of the form itself, a bravura demonstration of the endless mutability and versatility of the novel' Observer

`Chabon's storytelling is so characteristically exuberant, the narratives so unfailingly rich' Telegraph

`It doesn't add up to anything, stated the grandfather, as he looks back at his life. It doesn't mean anything. Luminous with love, Moonglow is here to show us that it does'
Irish Independent

`Chabon is virtuoso' Irish Times

`Moving, wry, thoroughly entertaining' FT

`Much of Moonglow feels Dickensian in style, and as with Dickens it is rich in sentiment. This is to the novel's credit ... Exquisite TLS

`Comparable to the young Paul Auster ... It's as intriguing as a locked room mystery, but in keeping with Chabon's canon, also has a heart the size of an elephant
Big Issue

`A wondrous book that celebrates the power of family bonds and the slipperiness of memory ... A thoroughly enchanting story' The Washington Post

`A rich and exotic confection ... This book is beautiful' New York Times

`A poignant, engrossing triumph' People

`Chabon is one of contemporary literature's most gifted prose stylists ... In Moonglow, he writes with both lovely lyricism and highly caffeinated fervour' Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

About the Author

Michael Chabon

Michael Chabon is the author of two collections of short stories A Model World and Werewolves in their Youth and three novels, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, Wonder Boys and The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. Wonder Boys has been made into a film starring Michael Douglas and Robert Downie Jr. and The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His short stories have appeared in The New Yorker, GQ, Esquire and Playboy. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter. Search Michael Chabon on Instagram and hear an excerpt on audio.

Author photo © Ulf Andersen/Getty

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Book Info

Publication date

21st September 2017

Author

Michael Chabon

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Author's Website

www.michaelchabon.com

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Publisher

Fourth Estate Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Format

Paperback
448 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
Books for the Boys
Family Drama
Reading Groups
eBook Favourites
Relationship Stories

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9780007548927

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