Book Review: A Visit from the Goon Squad – by Jennifer Egan

I picked this book up because I wanted to try a new author randomly. Goon Squad had won a Pulitzer Prize,  and that usually stood for a good book.


This book was unreadable for me. But it tricked me. I downloaded the free preview from Amazon and started reading the first chapter. Jennifer Egan is a fairly good writer using elegant description and dialog. The first chapter introduces Sasha, a kleptomaniac, in a session with her therapist in the current time. I was looking forward to the rest of the story and bought the book before I went on a backpacking outing where I’d need some reading material to keep my brain occupied through 14 hours of darkness in a small tent, when I  can only expect to sleep about eight hours.

The second chapter went back in time, told from a different narrator.

The third chapter went into the 1980 period when some of  the characters we met in chapter two were still in high school. This was narrated yet again by a different character. The book switched from the first to the third person narration randomly. Cohesiveness between the chapters lacked and there were so many different colorless and dull characters, it was difficult to keep them apart within each chapter, let alone over the course of the book.

It took willpower to make it to 25 percent on the Kindle. Then I started fast-forwarding to see if there was something worthwhile coming up that would pull it all together for me. But it didn’t happen. Reading this was not enjoyable. It was a drag, a truly abysmal reading experience. I don’t have time for this.

Impossible to read.

Leave a Reply