This year, Phinney Books owner Tom Nissley kicked off the list with Lincoln in the Bardo, even though he hadn’t had a chance to read it himself yet. However, after Colson Whitehead’s review of the novel in the New York Times Book Review, I have a feeling Tom won’t be disappointed.
… what might be the biggest release of the season (at least for lit’ry folks like us): Lincoln in the Bardo, the first novel by short-story wizard George Saunders, which came out on Tuesday. We’ll be curious to hear what people think: I’m bringing my copy home to start this week, and I’m also planning to listen along to the audiobook version, which rather famously includes 166 different voices, many of them, well, famous. [Julianne Moore! David Sedaris! Jeffrey Tambor! Don Cheadle! Mary Karr! The author himself! What a line-up.]
… [D]oes the whacked-out short-story brilliance of George Saunders translate onto the larger canvas of his first novel, in which, yes, Abraham Lincoln, the sitting president mourning his son, enters the Underworld?
–Tom Nissley, Phinney Books, Seattle, WA