Monday, June 23, 2008
Amnesia Moon by Jonathan Lethem
This is the second Jonathan Lethem book I've read (Motherless Brooklyn being the other) and each time the specter of Louis Ferdinand Celine has come to the fore. Amnesia Moon structurally and thematically recalls Journey To The End of Night with a narrator running from place to place, trying to escape the madness of the world. However, each new port of call unveils a new set of horrors. While I enjoyed much of Amnesia Moon, I also found it distancing. The narrator is time jumping, dream-chasing, and morphing into different versions of himself so much that it's ultimately hard to grow attached to him or any of the main characters. There is no finite reality to root the character or story down. In a way, the book is undone by it's PK Dick-like, time/space-tripping style. At the end of the day, I remain intrigued by Lethem, but have yet to be fully satisfied by any of his work.