Just finished reading Micahel Ondaatje’s 1982 work Running in the Family… what an experience!
Had not heard of it, discovered it by accident while looking for his new book The Cat’s Table, which I’ve been meaning to read for some time, having read about five of his books and loved them… and am just speechless with wonder at the magic he does. This book, which I read over the weekend, has reached into nearly every part of my own heart and opened it up for better or worse, and now I’m feeling washed over. Burned clean. Nothing I can say can approach what this book opens up.
It really catches up the whole great thing of family… all the beauty and pain of it wrapped into one account. And so much more…
It’s also an intense look into the personal aspects of 20th Century colonial life, all the beauty and pain of that! It was like a vast flood that raised several generations of people up in this fantasy of aspirations and accomplishments and then just smashed them down into the rocks of reality. He has this wonderful, probably mostly allegorical, story of his grandmother’s death that depicts that so beautifully.
I found the book – and another couple of his older books I haven’t read – on Abe Books, the independent bookstore site. Highly recommended!