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Aug 22

Book review – Richard Brautigan – The abortion: An historical romance 1966

Book review – Richard Brautigan – The abortion: An historical romance 1966

The Abortion An Historical Romance 1966

Rating: 7/10

Written by: Richard Brautigan

Review:  Book review – Richard Brautigan – The abortion: An historical romance 1966 – As soon as I started reading this book Haruki Murakami came to mind. Partly this is because the first half of the book is set in a library and Haruki has a book like that. But the main reason he sprang to mind was because of the style of the book. The first half of this book has that gentle, stylish story telling feel that Haruki uses to such good affect. Combine that with a slightly strange plot and there’s the connection [Editors note: I’ve since discovered the connection may not be as odd as I thought it seemed at the time as Brautigan had a connection with Zen and Japanese culture]. This only lasts for half the book as Brautigan then departs from his initial location and takes the lead characters on the road in a more traditional style. 

The concept of a library where unread novelists can take their books to finally be read is a nice one and I’ll certainly be looking for something similar when I finish writing my book. Brautigan then decides to take the main characters to Mexico to get an abortion and the style of the book changes. He manages to give you the feel of what it must have been like for a young couple to have an abortion during the sixties and this is interesting. Clearly Jack Kerouac springs to mind at this point. 

For me this feels a little like two short stories patched together to make a novel. Two entirely separate and unrelated ideas blended together without any real purpose. Stylish, even artistic, but in the end style over substance. Enjoyable, but not essential reading.

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Abortion:_An_Historical_Romance_1966

Amazon: Buy it