Reader reviews and comments on American Pastoral, plus links to write your own review.

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American Pastoral

by Philip Roth

American Pastoral by Philip Roth X
American Pastoral by Philip Roth
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  • First Published:
    Jun 1997, 423 pages
    Feb 1998, 423 pages

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The page that I choose to read.
I am 15 pages from the end of the paperback and am purposely writing this review before I finish the book. Anyone, who is from a small home town, and has been a part of pageant life should read this book. It is filled with feelings worth exploring. What this book has done for me, is give courage to read my own memoirs that I wrote about my life 24 years ago. I just turned 57, and had buried it on a shelf, afraid to read it. There are so many ways that Phillip Roth takes his audience that symbolize two birds on a fence in the winter : one looking back, and the other looking forward. Only through the house that holds his novel, can we clearly see where our own experiences shine. My introduction to this novel was out of curiosity from being cast as an extra in the upcoming movie. I was only a quarter of the way into the book when my experience as an extra took place, so I didn't quite understand it's value. It has been months later, and I am even more intrigued on a personal note. Such wonder, as to how one person can understand and touch so many parts of peoples' lives without ever really living them. And yes, they do exist.

Repetition, Anyone?
I chose to read this book because it was a Pulitzer winner and I cannot understand why [it won]. The story goes in circles, the writing style is wordy without much substance. How many times and ways can you say what essentially is the same thing over and over again? This book is driving me nuts--it is almost as unreadable as "Wicked". But that's just my opinion.
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