Moon Palace by Paul Auster

moon palace by paul austerI don’t know about Paul Auster. On reading The New York Trilogy I was unimpressed. On re-reading it recently, I was very impressed. His autobiographical non-fiction is a bit mixed: The Invention of Solitude (1982) pretty good, but Report from the Interior (2013) a bit tedious. So I thought I’d try a few of the other novels:


The New York Trilogy (1987)

City of Glass (1985)

Ghosts (1986)

The Locked Room (1986)

In the Country of Last Things (1987)

Moon Palace (1989)

The Music of Chance (1990)

Auggie Wren’s Christmas Story (1990)

Leviathan (1992)

Mr. Vertigo (1994)

Timbuktu (1999)

The Book of Illusions (2002)

Oracle Night (2003)

The Brooklyn Follies (2005)

Travels in the Scriptorium (2006)

Man in the Dark (2008)

Invisible (2009)

Sunset Park (2010)

Day/Night (2013)

4 3 2 1 (2017)


Moon Palace starts off great, with a great opening paragraph, but the novel soon fails to deliver, fails to cohere, and fails to work. It’s a rather ungainly piece of work, with two parts stuck together which seem to have been taken from two different novels. The first part is ok, for what it is: young guy falls to pieces for no apparent reason. Then it just gets a little silly. The second of half of this novel fails to convince. So overall, the novel, despite some nice touches, makes the reader wonder why they’re reading it. what’s this novel for, other than passing the time? Getting to the end, one is happy to disembark.


Mr A



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