Book Review: A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

AuthorJennifer Egan
TitleA Visit From the Goon Squad by
Publication Info: Anchor (2011)
ISBN: 0307477479

I think it took me a good 70-80 pages to get into this collection of intertwined short stories and vignettes, but from that point on I was won over.  Egan does a good job of establishing characters with seemingly minor characters from one story emerging as the main protagonist in a later story.  She also does a great job of writing in many different styles, most remarkable with an emotionally touching story written as a Power Point slideshow.  This type of experimental literature has been done before, but Egan effectively uses these devices without pretension to tell a story of ordinary people facing life and love and morality (as well as music).  The only part I didn’t like was the final story set in the future which had too many cutesy gimmicks that didn’t ring true to the rest of the book.  All the same, A Visit From the Goon Squad is in the running for one of my favorite books read this year.
Recommended booksLet the Great World Spin by Colum McCann, Jazz by Toni Morrison, and Ulysses by James Joyce.
Rating: ****1/2

2 thoughts on “Book Review: A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

  1. I just recommended this book to a friend yesterday. It came out about the same time as Freedom did and that sucked up all the press. I hated that book. To me, Visit was much more a snapshot of us now than Franzen’s. Meantime, I cannot put down Gone Girl!


    1. Thanks for the comment Anon. I neglected to mention that I read this book because my wife said “Read this, I think you’ll like it.” My wife picks out good books for me.


Your comments are welcome

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.