Compelling stories can be transformative for both reader and writer. They unify us because everyone’s got one. Even non- fiction and poetry genres tell a story, or they aren’t reaching anyone who cares.
Lincoln In the Bardo is one hell of a weird, wonderful, super-unique, cosmic journey of a novel. The author has painstakingly researched and accumulated real newspaper reports and book quotes from the time of Lincoln about him, his family, his acquaintances and party, and the Civil War, and incorporated these into a novel astounding in its breadth and scope, spanning love, war, hate, grief, loss, life, death, and beyond, blurring the boundaries of them all.
Too many details will give away too much, but like other great novels such as The Goldfinch, The Nightingale, and All the Light We Cannot See, this work’s profundity sneaks up on the reader and will leave him or her breathless and thoughtful for quite a while.
It confronts the darker instincts and fears that unite us in our humanity, and shows these darkest instincts and circumstances can give way to something brilliant, good, and immortal.
Likewise, books give us a kind of immortality: they spawn further creativity, clarity, and invention. They get under our skin like a virulent contagion, and change us, as we pass our insights and creations on and on. Enjoy!
“A spiritual journey is a terrible thing to waste.”