Every once in a while a book comes along that completely engrosses you both on an intellectual as well as an emotional level. The Brooklyn Follies is one such book.
I’ve read two Paul Auster books and found myself utterly impressed by both. The New York Trilogy astounded me because of its experimentalism and form. Mr. Vertigo forced me to fall in love with it because of its superb story and characterization. Because of these two drastically different styles by the same author, I wasn’t sure which was the true Paul Auster.
Simply put, they both are. Unlike so many authors, Auster is not a one-trick pony. From what I’ve seen, he can write anything about anything. Don’t get me wrong, he has his favorite themes and such, but he’s not one of these writers who essentially delivers the same story book after book after book.
The Brooklyn Follies offers a very complex story delivered in such a fashion that the reader doesn’t even realize the true complexity unfolding, which, of course, is the sign of a master writer. What would seem to be nothing more than coincidences are both a statement by the author about life as well as what I can only assume was the result of careful planning on Auster’s part.
But the characters! Few authors so perfectly convey the characters found within their work. I tell you, I completely became friends with the characters in this book and it saddens me that their story came to an end. I don’t mean that in the fatal sense, I literally mean I finished the book.
If you want a story that will truly be a joy to read, I urge you to try The Brooklyn Follies.