I have to confess, I was more than a little excited when I read that Jeffrey Eugenides was releasing a new novel late last year. I became hooked from the first time I read The Virgin Suicides, a potently short novel employing a Greek chorus style of narration it packed a punch that lingered long after.
I followed this up with Middlesex. This is a multi generational tome with a central character with a difference. A wonderful read, in fact I would put it in my top list of all time favourites. I chose it for my book club (which has been going for three years now) and recently many of us were agreeing that in those three years it still stands apart from the crowd.
So The Marriage Plot is the latest to hit the shelves. Well I was one of the first to pick it up and settled into in with more than trepidation. My expectations were very very high following Middlesex but I wasn’t disappointed. The Marriage Plot is a very different style to Middlesex and I applaud an author who has the guts to write something really different as a follow up to a previous bestseller. Some similarites persist – As always Eugenides gets into the head of characters like few others can, in this case a searingly honest look inside the tortured world of a manic depressive, a young religious studies student dreaming of unrequited love and searching for answers to universal questions and a young bright woman whose greates flaw is that she is a hopeless romantic. I don’t know if fans of Middlesex will think this better or worse – for me I am nto comparing them. The Marriage Plot stands alone and once again Eugenides has proved he is one of the best contemporary fiction writers out there at the moment.
Would love to hear anyone elses thoughts?!