Overall Rating: LOVED it! ♥️
I read Lincoln in the Bardo back in March of this year. Having seen all the attention it had received the previous year I was intrigued and after finishing, there was no doubt in my mind why it had won the 2017 Man Booker Prize.
When Abraham Lincoln’s 11-year-old son, Willie, passed away in 1862 the President is devastated. New reports from the time speak of Lincoln’s multiple solo visits to his son’s crypt where he’d spend time holding the body of his deceased son.
What history does not tell us is the story of Willie, a boy who doesn’t know he’s stuck in purgatory. Even with the guidance of other spirits, Willie struggles to understand why his father doesn’t respond when he visits and why he’s so sad.
Though the writing style of this book took a few pages to adjust to (it’s almost entirely dialogue), I found that, once adjusted, it made for a remarkably captivating read.
Falling under the historical fiction genre, the story and it’s character’s experiences felt true to the time period. The plot of novel was heavily set in themes of loss, growth, acceptance, and moving forward; all of which were perfectly executed.
Closing this book I was left in awe – not just at the lifetimes of emotions I had just experienced but at George Saunders incredible creativity and the the risk he took with this unfamiliar narrative. A risk that most certainly paid off.
Lincoln in the Bardo is available for purchase through my Amazon storefront! Help support this blog! 🙂 Lincoln in the Bardo
Have you read this book? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!