Stories happen only to those who are able to tell them, someone once said. In the same way, perhaps, experiences present themselves only to those who are able to have them.From what I understand, The New York Trilogy is Paul Auster's signature work. As the title suggests, the book is a set of three, loosely-interconnected novels that each take place in New York City: City of Glass, Ghosts, and The Locked Room. Each tome is similar in theme - each of the story's main characters act as detectives searching for understanding.The set of novels offers a non-linear structure that adds to the dimension of intrigue and quite frankly, it works. With the exception of the second tome, I found myself wanting more and had difficulty putting it down. Auster manages to explore the idea of identity, change, language and life experiences in an authentic way.
In the end, each life is no more than the sum of contingent facts, a chronicle of chance intersections, of flukes, of random events that divulge nothing but their own lack of purpose.This is a book that is best read slowly, to take it in as it was meant to be taken in. Sentence, paragraphs and stories interweave and connect to reveal a very post-modern novel that is full of existentialism and the metaphysical. After reading two Paul Auster novels I can understand why readers complain that he reuses ideas in older books to writer new ones. There were many similarities between The New York Trilogy and The Book of Illusions, namely in character and content. I still think Auster is great, but I am going to give myself a break before I read more of him. I don't want to overdo it and decide my captivating author has become banal.
Publisher: Faber First, 1987