Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Paul Auster and 4 3 2 1


Paul Auster is sick of talking about his book. He has been talking about 4 3 2 1 (yes, that's the name of his book---just numbers) for a year, and he is tired of talking about it.

"I knew what I was doing when I did it, as much as I ever did, which I don't," he tells his audience, a sold-out crowd of avid readers at the Alley Theater in Houston, somewhat wearily. "Writing novels...it's so mysterious."

Serendipitously, the Alley stage is a fitting background for Auster's reading from his book set in the turbulent American 60's; the current Alley production is Robert Schenkann's The Great Society, the story of LBJ and his administration's attempts to better the world while fighting in Vietnam and at home, against the war. I saw the play earlier this year.

When he is fourteen, the boy standing next to him at summer camp is hit by lightning and killed.

How do things that happen to you change your life? Auster explores that idea by taking one main character and allowing him to live four different lives. 

It's a fascinating idea for a book, of course, but it's a long book (very, very long---you have been warned) so prepare to get to know one fictional character better than you've ever known a fictional character, in all his mysterious and possible facets. 

Go home and rest, Paul Auster. For a little while. Then get busy writing again.


For a fun, book-ish interview with Paul Auster take a look at Paul Auster: By the Book from the NY Times.




For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by West Metro Mommy Reads. To participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken and then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky at West Metro Mommy Reads.

16 comments:

  1. Interesting. Nice that you got to hear this author speak.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bought season tickets to see all seven authors coming to Houston through Inprint this year.

      Delete
  2. Did he speak or read extracts from his book. Last Author I went to see was the most boring person ever.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He did both. He read from his book, and then he was interviewed.

      Delete
  3. It must be great hearing the author himself.

    ReplyDelete
  4. This book sounds wonderful! I read one a while ago and the title escapes me, but it was about a man who kept dying and coming back as himself. I think. It's only a vague memory, although I bet I can track it down in my archives.

    ReplyDelete
  5. What a concept. Writing 4 novels in one. Since the character lives 4 different lives. A whole lot of work, went into the writing of this one!

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a clever concept for a book, to follow the same person in 4 different versions of their life. I am sure we all have those moments where we wonder "what if I had..."

    ReplyDelete
  7. I like this author very much but I would have to clear my schedule to read this one. I want to, but when? Summer?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Retirement? That's when I am hope I rediscover time.

      Delete
  8. It's been a while since I've been to an author reading. Sounds like this one was interesting. I've been wanting to see "The Great Society" As a native Texan myself, I'm curious.
    My Saturday post: Kilauea Lighthouse.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'll have to check out this book! I've read one of his other books, but that was quite a long time ago and I think I'm due for a new one!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Another great evening with books!

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!