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E.L. Doctorow's City of God starts off not merely with a bang but with the big bang itself, that "great expansive flowering, a silent flash into being in a second or two of the entire outrushing universe". It doesn't remain on this cosmic plane throughout. There's a mystery here, along with a romance, a chilling Holocaust narrative and a deep-focus portrait of fin-de-siécle Manhattan.
In the early pages of the novel, an enormous brass cross is pilfered from a church on the Lower East Side. Father Thomas Pemberton of St Timothy's promptly sets off in search of it, dubbing himself the Divinity Detective. Yet he suspects from the start that this is no ordinary theft, with no ordinary solution. The cross eventually turns up on the roof of the Synagogue for Evolutionary Judaism, a tiny Manhattan institution to which Pemberton has clearly been led by fate. His encounter with the synagogue's rabbinical duo--a husband-and-wife team struggling to reclaim a pre-scriptural state of "unmediated awe"--transforms his life. It also destroys what's left of his conventional Christian belief. As his relationship with Judaism deepens, he discards the clerical collar altogether and embarks upon a penitential exploration of the Holocaust--which in turn allows Doctorow to loop his narrative back and forth between several generations of (mostly) Jew and Gentile.
City of God is a marvellous hybrid which includes a metafictional framework (i.e., an author-as-character with a rather Doctorovian CV), an ongoing rumination on city life and a dozen other major strands and minor players. There is an undeniable power to the way Doctorow makes his fictional worlds collide, setting off all manner of historical and philosophical conflagrations. At one point he imagines "the totality of intimate human narrations/composing a hymn to enlightenment/if that were possible". A tall order, yes. But despite its occasional longueurs, City of God suggests that it is possible indeed. --James Marcus -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.
“A grander perspective on the universe . . . a novel that sets its sights on God.”—The Wall Street Journal
“Dazzling . . . The true miracle of City of God is the way its disparate parts fuse into a consistently enthralling and suspenseful whole.”—Time
“Blooms with humor, and a humanity that carries triumphant as intelligent a novel as one might hope to find these days.”—Los Angeles Times
“Radiates [with] panoramic ambition and spiritual incandescence.”—Chicago Tribune
“One of the greatest American novels of the past fifty years . . . Reading City of God restores one’s faith in literature.”—The Houston Chronicle
From the Hardcover edition.
As in Ragtime, E.L. Doctorow has, once again, brought his talent and brilliance to major events of the twentieth century. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 30. Juli 2000 von June Taubman
This book, which I anticipated so much, having read a lot of other Doctorow, disappointed. Much of it felt to me like an introduction and I kept waiting for it to take off. Lesen Sie weiter...Am 28. Juli 2000 veröffentlicht
Doctorow is one of my favorite authors, thus my disappointment with this book was keener than it would have been had not the writer been of such great stature. Lesen Sie weiter...Am 26. Juli 2000 veröffentlicht
This is a virulent anti-christian diatribe. Why is Doctorow so angry and mean spirited? He also rants about Hitler in an alarmingly demonic way which to me only makes the whole... Lesen Sie weiter...Am 23. Juli 2000 veröffentlicht
Like many of the previous reviewers, I was also tempted to give up without finishing...but then I would have missed the extremely satisfying passages in the last few pages of the... Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 17. Juli 2000 von Linda Chapleau
I looked forward to reading this book because I thought Ragtime was excellent and from the reviews, I thought I would like this one. I was disappointed. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 17. Juli 2000 von Loretta A. Caputo
I'd never read any Doctorov until now, but had heard him acclaimed as a great 20th century author. Not on the basis of this book, I don't think. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 15. Juli 2000 von Mike Crowl
I had really liked some of Doctorow's previous works especially Ragtime, so was anxious to check out his newest work which sounded intriguing. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 14. Juli 2000 von Todd Goldberg
This novel is presented as a writer's notebook, and it is most effectively read as all coming from the same writer's pen, albeit in different voices. Lesen Sie weiter...Am 5. Juli 2000 veröffentlicht