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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Patrimony: A True Story

I few weeks ago I decided to check out the new library in the next city over. I have really appreciated my little bookmobile library, but it has nothing on this new library. Not only is this new building huge and very tech savvy, but it has a lot of programs for kids and adults.

A program that I was really excited about is the "Books & Bites" book club. It's for adults and is at noon. I'm not sure how the "Bites" part works (if the members are supposed to bring something to share or what), but I anxiously signed up for this month's discussion on Patrimony. Unfortunately, I've had something come up and won't be able to attend.

But, I did read Patrimony, although I didn't know anything about the author (turns out he's written some pretty risque novels).

PatrimonyPatrimony by Philip Roth
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Patrimony is a memoir written by award winning novelist Philip Roth about his father; specifically about his death and the memories his illness invoked in his son.

I had mixed emotions about this book. On the positive side, this non-fiction work was thought provoking and read at least somewhat like a novel (I need to get over thinking that all non-fiction is like a text book).

I could relate somewhat to the author's situation. My father had cancer when I was a teenager, and it was such a roller coaster of emotions.

Philip learned a lot during the ordeal with his father. He seemed to be a loving son, trying his best to help his father.

The story jumps around in time, telling the current situation and then veering back into memories. This mostly worked, although at times it was a little confusing.

Overall I'd say that the memoir was interesting. It had some language and some embarrassing details that I didn't care for. I don't regret reading it, although I won't be seeking out any of Roth's other books.