Friday, August 03, 2007

The Double Bind - Chris Bohjalian


I have loved every novel I’ve read of Chris Bohjalian’s. The Double Bind is no exception.

A taut, complex psychological thriller, this novel left me taken aback and perplexed at the end – had me skimming once again through the book from the beginning. To be honest, I’m still thinking about it. It’s that haunting, that rich with its layers of meaning and interpretation.

Writing a review of this book poses quite the dilemma. If you say too much, you’ll be giving away the heart and soul of its compelling uniqueness.


“When college sophomore Laurel Estabrook is attacked while riding her bicycle through Vermont’s back roads, her life is forever changed. Formerly outgoing, Laurel withdraws into her photography and begins to work at a homeless shelter. There she meets Bobbie Crocker, a man with a history of mental illness and a box of photographs that he won’t let anyone see. When Bobbie dies suddenly, Laurel discovers that he was telling the truth: before he was homeless, Bobbie Crocker was a successful photographer who had indeed worked with such legends as Chuck Berry, Robert Frost, and Eartha Kitt.”

What follows is Laurel’s quest to unravel the mystery of this homeless man’s life, his past – and how his life mysteriously intersects with her own.

Despite the fact others consider this pursuit an obsession, Laurel will not be swayed – she is intent upon her mission. As she follows the fascinating and disturbing clues, there is an urgency to her quest. Laurel senses that she too is being pursued.

The Double Bind explores the lengths to which our bodies and minds will go in order to survive. How we survive – how we rationalize, justify or perhaps bury the truth of our past and present lives in order to do so – makes for an engrossing, intriguing novel.

4 comments:

Eileen said...

You read the most interesting books! I love to read, and I read all different types of books, constantly, but the ones you mention I have never heard of. This makes me so happy and excited and I look forward to getting the book. Thanks for taking the time to do this, I really appreciate it!

Beth said...

eileen:
I read all kinds of books, too. Just bought a "chick lit" book but I usually don't review those.
Maybe I should...

Eileen said...

Yes, please do, I love them all. My friends laugh when they see the books all over my house, they range from history, memoirs, chick lit, fiction, non fiction....and the list goes on. I just really love to read all kinds and am always looking for reviews on good ones. I appreciate you taking the time to do it. Smile.

Beth said...

eileen:
Just started it today - I'll let you know. (So far, so good.)