4 3 2 1, Paul Auster

*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher *

4 3 2 1, Pau AusterAuthor: Paul Auster
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Pages: 866
Format: Hardcover
ISBN-10: 0571324622
ISBN-13: 9780571324620
Publisher: Hardcover | Paperback

4 stars

On March 3, 1947, in the maternity ward of Beth Israel Hospital in Newark, New Jersey, Archibald Isaac Ferguson, the one and only child of Rose and Stanley Ferguson, is born. From that single beginning, Ferguson's life will take four simultaneous and independent fictional paths. Four Fergusons made of the same genetic material, four boys who are the same boy, will go on to lead four parallel and entirely different lives. Family fortunes diverge. Loves and friendships and intellectual passions contrast. Chapter by chapter, the rotating narratives evolve into an elaborate dance of inner worlds enfolded within the outer forces of history as, one by one, the intimate plot of each Ferguson's story rushes on across the tumultuous and fractured terrain of mid twentieth-century America. A boy grows up-again and again and again.

I spend a lot of time with this book. It is not really a quick read but a very engaging one. The book tells 4 different stories of the same boy Archie Ferguson. The whole book is based on the "what if?" question. I loved that the all the characters in Archie his life are the same in all the stories. Their part they play in his life is different though. I did enjoy that Archie was the same in the stories with small differences. Sports and language were really important to him but influenced his life in different ways. Usually stories like this would totally confuse me but there was something in this book that was working for me. What I really liked is that all chapters are around 50 pages so it is really clear when something new starts.
The one thing that did annoy me were the very long sentences sometimes used. I always loose my concentration with those and some were half a page long. I did have to reread a few of them as I missed did not register.
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