I hate to be contrary, but this book is not what it claims to be.
Given the title, it’s not surprising that it fails so miserably. The
author uses the thinly disguised narrator to tell us the true story of
his semi-tragic life in which both his parents died horribly from
natural causes within six months of each other and he was forced to
raise his younger brother while trying to start a brilliant but failing
magazine. [Ed Note: In what he considers one his very biggest failures,
our very own Jonny had an opportunity to work for Might magazine, but he screwed it up] A Hearbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius
starts off well enough, then descends into the doldrums of boredom.
Eggers attempts to resurrect the book only lead to apathy on the part
of the reader and quite possibly scorn. The ‘indian summer’ narrative
trick at the end is transparent and insulting.
On the brighter
side, in the back of the book reading reverse, is a list of footnotes
that is easy to follow and fucking hilarious. Eggers scores big with
this addition of trivial addendum that I found to be more interesting
than the actual text.
Here’s a fun fact for you, Eggers is currently working on the site for
McSweeney’s literary journal and has sold the movie rights to this book
for one million dollars. Gentlemen, get out your typewriters!
- BUY IT OR BURN IT: Buy it. What the hell! Lord knows you could use to read more.