Paul Auster – New York Trilogy (1987)

I could reproch how the three stories of New York Trilogy have no end and leave many questions unanswered, but this would be being naively affected by viewing each story separately. When reading this book from beginning to end, each part gives an occasion to see the others from an other point of view where the seemingly logic of the character of one becomes as absurd for the character of an other than it was for us in the first time. A great book.

Frederic Lebain, wallpaper New York


That is my favorite aspect of New York Trilogy: the reader first meets a person with a well ordered life and mind who will have to face an event which, although disturbing, seems to be quite manageable for him. For the rest of the story, one can observe how the logical frame of this person will lead her to do absurd things that could not have been expected in the first place. The skillful way with which Paul Auster mixes the suspense of detective stories with a “Borges”-que absurdity of identities and life goals makes New York Trilogy a great book, growing my envy to read other old works of this author.
And he is still a master to talk about love:

Everything had changed for me, and words that I had never understood before suddenly began to make sense. This came as a revelation, and when I finally had time to absorb it, I wondered how I had managed to live so long without learning this simple thing. I am not talking about desire so much as knowledge, the discovery that two people, through desire, can create a thing more powerful than either of them can create alone. This knowledge changed me, I think, and actually made me feel more human. By belonging to Sophie, I began to feel as though I belonged to everyone else as well. My true place in the world, it turned out, was somewhere beyond myself, and if that place was inside me, it was also unlocatable. This was the tiny hole between self and not-self, and for the first time in my life I saw nowhere as the exact center of the world. p274

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