Saturday, September 11, 2010

Tinkers by Paul Harding

"Tinkers is about the legacy of consciousness and the porousness of identity from one generation to the next. At once heartbreaking and life affirming, it is an elegiac meditation on love, loss, and the fierce beauty of nature." - from the book jacket of this year's Pulitzer Prize winner for fiction. Marilynne Robinson says, "Tinkers is truly remarkable." A review somewhere else compared the writing to Annie Dillard's style.

All this sounds fabulous - a good match for my reading tastes - but I couldn't get past one hour of the audiobook version. (It's less than 5 hours in total, unabridged.) It wasn't Christian Rummel's fault; he did a fine job of reading. The story itself was only mildly interesting. There are some kinds of stories that just don't work for me in audio. This is one of those. I need to ingest the words at a speed only possible in silent reading. So Tinkers has gone back to the library and now an audiobook of short stories by Jhumpa Lahiri has me mesmerized every time I put the headphones over my ears.

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