Moonglow

UnknownBy Michael Chabon

The Short Take:

This wonderful non-memoire is tightly woven, elegantly written, and infinitely diverting. Written as if it were his own family’s story (particularly the story of his grandfather), Chabon explores what could have been, what might have been, and what difference would it make(anyway).

Why?

At first I fell for the conceit it really was his grandfather’s life Chabon recounted — despite the warning he clearly states before his narrative begins. He does a good job of seducing you into this faux family, where the patriarch is a space-loving, quiet man who devotes himself to saving his wife, a Holocaust survivor with recurring mental illness. It’s a love song, a morality play, war story, and science fact — a captivating mixture of human frailty, love, and hubris; wrapped in and warped by the greater powers of war and governments.

Of course, Chabon is already recognized as one of the exceptional authors of our times. This novel lives up to his reputation. And strengthens it.

A Little Plot:

Michael’s taciturn grandfather is dying. The pain drugs he takes make him unusually voluble so he tells his grandson the story of his life, his passion for space, his hatred of Von Went, and his commitment to his wife and daughter.

For more about the author and his works, click here.

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