Monday, January 19, 2009

Going To See The Elephant by Rodes Fishburne

Amazon.com Product Description:

On a windy September day, twenty-five-year-old Slater Brown stands in the back of a bicycle taxi hurtling the wrong way down the busiest street in San Francisco. Slater has come to “see the elephant,” to stake his claim to fame and become the greatest writer ever. But this city of gleaming water and infinite magic has other plans in this astounding first novel—at once a love story, a feast of literary imagination, and a dazzlingly original tale of passion, ambition, and genius in all their guises...

Slater Brown lays siege to San Francisco like Achilles circling Troy—until he crashes headlong into reality. Out of money and prospects, he applies for a job at a moribund weekly newspaper called the Morning Trumpet—and, as if by fate, is given a very special parting gift from a moonlighting mystic.

Suddenly Slater has an exclusive on every story in the city. With his uncanny knack for finding scoops, he’s bringing the Trumpet back to life, infuriating a corrupt mayor and falling in love with the woman destined to become his muse. But it is the astonishing inventor Milo Magnet—a man obsessed with harnessing the weather—who will force Slater to navigate the most dangerous straits.

For as Milo unleashes his power on San Francisco and the ravishing Callio de Quincy entrances Slater with hers, as storm clouds gather literally overhead, Slater will become at once a pawn, a savior, and the last best hope for a city that needs him—and his knack for the truth—more than ever before.

Going To See The Elephant is a hilarious, quirky, and very full of great little details. It felt to me that the story was set in an alternate universe San Fransisco. For the life of me I couldn't figure out what time period it takes place in and I loved it for that. It's truly original.

The characters in this book are priceless. A sleek young reporter that somehow always has the biggest scoop, the crazy over-eating Mayor, the genius of everything that decides he wants to produce his own weather, the chess prodigy who is as sweet as can be, and don't forget the mini weather packets moving around the city. These characters make the story.

And on top of all these fabulous characters are all the back stories that the author weaves in, my favorite being the history of the newspaper, The Morning Trumpet. I felt like I was reading a really great classic, full of quirks and originality.

I went into this story looking for a coming of age story of a 25 year old man which sounded great to me but it was so much more than that, I don't even have the words to describe it. If you like a story full of random details and humor this is for you!

Going To See The Elephant was released in Hardcover on December 30th.

4/5 Stars
ARC provided by LibraryThing Early Reviewer's Program

What's a book you enjoy with quirky characters?

7 comments:

  1. Another good one! The title caught my attention because in the Civil War novel I'm reading now, "seeing the elephant" is a euphemism for seeing battle.

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  2. This sounds like something I would love!! The characters in Paper Towns are pretty quirky.

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  3. I noticed this title on the new release list and was considering whether to add it to my wish list. And then here is your wonderful review! I will have to add it on. Thanks!

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  4. You had me from the word quirky - I love quirky characters in books and in real life.

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  5. Awesome review Alea! I think I'll add this fun sounding book to my TBR.

    I added the link to the ARC Challenge post.

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  6. Sounds good! Jennifer Crusie and Mary Kay Andrews both have very quirky characters in their novels.

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  7. Yay, so glad I could bring this great book to your attention!

    Thanks for the suggestions too!

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