Carrie W. (Arcanum, OH)
I could not connect with any of the characters in this book, I found it very difficult to read.
John W. (Clayton, Missouri)
Good, but Not Great Effort
I loved Groff's first novel, Monsters of Templeton, so I was excited at the opportunity to reading an advanced copy of Arcadia. While I wasn’t totally disappointed it pales in comparison to her previous book. It doesn’t have a lot of action and is an introspective look at Bit’s life. I also did not like the use the constant present tense used in narration. I did enjoy her descriptions of the community. crazy hippie commune set in the late 1960s and located in Central New York. I felt less connected to and/or interested in Bit.
Beth H. (New Windsor, IL)
"Arcadia" is a worth-while read
As a contemporary fairy tale, "Arcadia" is beautifully written, imaginative, and thought-provoking. I enjoyed the character of Bit, who is portrayed as an idealistic old soul, and I appreciated his efforts to find comfort and peace in a tragic world that is deeply flawed and at times heartbreaking. Although there were parts of this slow-paced novel that seemed over-ambitious and perhaps somewhat contrived, it is a lovely book overall and I would definitely recommend it.
Cam G. (Murrells Inlet, SC)
I was a young married woman with a family in the 60's when communes, "free love" and drugs became the "thing" to do. I think, perhaps, that is one reason why I did not much enjoy Arcadia. I must admit that Gross's prose is quite excellent but it wasn't enough for me.
Katherine Y. (Albuquerque, NM)
Another Hit from Lauren Groff
If you enjoyed Ms. Groff's first book, "The Monsters of Templeton", you're bound to enjoy this second excellent effort. And, if you haven't read her first novel, I recommend them both. The world she creates is filled with wonderful characters and a great story.
Maggie R. (Canoga Park, CA)
Another taste of Groff
As someone who has read and relished Groff's 2 prior books, I was caught off guard at first by the pacing of this novel but ultimately loved it as much as the others. The style may be an acquired taste but for those can see the world askew, this book should satisfy.
Alice S. (East Haven, Ct)
Arcadia was an engrossing and enjoyable book. The story is told by the character Bit, a young man born and raised in a commune. It is through him you see the way the world changes from the idealism of the 60's into the future. As someone who was a teenager during that time, the whole atmosphere of the first half of the book reminded me of how wonderful it was to be young and alive then and how hopeful and optimistic we were. I can see this as a good book for discussion in a Book Club. One question that can be asked is why is the idealism and unselfish way of living of a commune so hard to sustain and how did the "real "world get in the way?
Also, what events occurred during that time in the U.S. that changed people?