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Inspiration from A Visit From the Goon Squad

 A Visit From the Goon Squad

Jennifer Egan

- a novel by Jennifer Egan (2010)
Book Review and Reflections 

The "goon squad" visited me the other day when I finished this Pulitzer Prize winning book and after catching my breath immediately wanted to start it again. 

 The audiobook experience in particular was immersive, and narrated by Roxana Ortega with the subtle nuances and voice inflections that were uniquely performed in the narrative and in every character. 

The ground-breaking unique novel is connected to the following themes that cross over like threads and move back and forth in time. Time is a main theme along with the rise and dilution in the music industry, changes in life, friendship, relationships, digital culture on steroids, and redemption. 
Each chapter is like a track on an album and stands alone but is connected to the whole.  

Hemingway's quote about being immersed in the storytelling is relevant here, especially  with this extraordinary novel, as this is what happens with this page turner, or in the case of an audiobook, the difficulty of pressing the pause or stop button. 
“All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you: the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was. If you can get so that you can give that to people, then you are a writer.”  - - Ernest Hemingway  
When I listened to this audiobook I was right there with every character like it was a vicarious journey of a variety of experiences. A natural high - I think endorphins were being released ! :) 
Rave reviews by the NY Times and Wash. Post on Audible:

“Pitch perfect.... Is there anything Egan can’t do in this mash-up of forms? Write successfully in the second person? Check. Parody celebrity journalism and David Foster Wallace at the same time? Check. Make a moving narrative out of a PowerPoint presentation? Check.... Although shredded with loss, A Visit from the Goon Squad is often darkly, rippingly funny. Egan possesses a satirist’s eye and a romance novelist’s heart.... No one is beyond the pale of her affection; no one is spared lampooning.... For a book so relentlessly savvy about the digital age and its effect on how we experience time (speeded up, herky-jerky, instantaneous, but also full of unbearable gaps and pauses), A Visit from the Goon Squad is remarkably old-fashioned in its obsession with time’s effects on characters, that preoccupation of those doorstop 19th-century novels.” (Will Blythe, The New York Times Book Review)

“If Jennifer Egan is our reward for living through the self-conscious gimmicks and ironic claptrap of postmodernism, then it was all worthwhile.... A deeply humane story about growing up and growing old in a culture corroded by technology and marketing.... [A] triumph of technical bravado and tender sympathy.... Here, in ways that surprise and delight again, she transcends slick boomer nostalgia and offers a testament to the redemptive power of raw emotion in an age of synthetic sound and glossy avatars. Turn up the music, skip the college reunion and curl up with The Goon Squad instead.” (Ron Charles, The Washington Post)

With the 7 day Audible free trial get a free audiobook download. Then you can still cancel and keep it. Life may never be the same after a visit from the goon squad.

 Free download of A Visit From the Goon Squad >



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