Much is said about plot in writing. Without plot, you don’t have a book… right?
That’s why, at first glance, A Visit from the Goon Squad appears to be a series of interconnected short stories. There is no overarching plot, no event or circumstances that drive the characters through the narrative, which switches back on itself, going into the past and then the future over the course of four decades. In books like The Train of Small Mercies, the characters never meet. But the same event—the death of RFK—draws them together in theme and event if not in circumstance, and so their arcs mirror each other.
This weekend, beginning at 8 am tomorrow (Saturday) morning, I will be partially participating in Dewey’s 24-hour-readathon. I look forward to this readathon every spring and fall, and even though I’ll be traveling to Delaware this weekend, I’m still planning on getting plenty read.
I am a firm believer that you can–and should–judge a book by its cover. After working for a book publisher and now as a book reviewer, I have come to the realization that the time spent perfecting a book’s title and cover art is usually a pretty good indication of how successful the publisher thinks it will be.