The Story of Edgar Sawtelle

February 7th, 2011 Posted in Award-Winning, Fiction, Kim, Popular Fiction

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, is David Wroblewski’s debut novel and one that took him a long time to write. In his interviews on the book, Wroblewski sites working on it all through his MFA, just to end up rewriting large portions of the book later. This book hit stands in 2008 to critical acclaim, giving Wroblewski all the validation in the world for the time he spent on constructing this marvel of a novel.

The story has been labeled a modern-day Hamlet of sorts, following Edgar, a mute, through is childhood and adolescence on his family’s farm, where they raise dogs. The dogs, a few specifically, are as much of a main character as any of the humans in the book and animal lovers—dog lovers especially—will feel a strong connection to large portions of the book.

The book is structured like a five-act play, with impeccable prose and heart wrenching storytelling throughout. Wroblewski offers readers so many poignant passages and incredible observations it’s impossible not to fall in love. One of Wroblewski’s best story-telling techniques is in using chapters told from the perspective of the dogs. This could easily become campy or tacky, but in this case, it couldn’t be farther from the truth. I think it was his writing in these chapters specifically, aside from the intricate plot and layers of perspective in the story, that really won me over. Any and all people should be happy to have such an experience with a book. Five bones from me! And until you hear otherwise, I probably won’t stop talking about it anytime soon.

Read by: Kim

Title: The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
Author: David Wroblewski
Read: February 2011
Source: Powlles Books

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