Friday, June 03, 2011

the sojourn

When I’m feeling up to it, but more likely as time permits, I like to write quick and dirty reviews of the books I read. More typically, though, I let book review posts slide until the end of the month. But I just read a book that I can’t stop thinking about. In fact, I’m becoming an evangelist for it. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I read a book that moved me this much.

Last night, my book group met and discussed The Sojourn, a first novel by Andrew Krivak. We all loved it. This elegant, taut novel (191 pages!) is a first-person reflection from a Czech sharpshooter in WW1. The novel has a rather dramatic beginning, but I think it sets up the story nicely. I found that I really cared about the main character and most of the minor characters, which is more than I can say for the other novel I am currently reading. Unlike other war stories, there are minimal battle scenes. Blood and gore and heavy-handed moralizing are also missing. It was, in a word, amazing, and I highly recommend it.

The Sojourn is currently available in trade paperback. It will be the best $15 you spend this week. Remember, the book is only 191 pages. Really, not a big commitment, at all. If you’d like further convincing, read this review.

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