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Time Capsule by Mitch Berman

Time Capsule

by Mitch Berman

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I found this old-ish science fiction paperback (published in 1987) on the shelves of my used bookstore, where it had probably been sitting, minding its own business, for 15 years. I bought the store just past two years ago and I had finally gotten to reorganizing and culling the sci fi section. The description on the front cover reads, "A jazz musician's epic journey through an America devastated by Nuclear war--An unspeakable gig he thinks he's playing solo." Since I'm a huge jazz fan, I knew I had to read this book, so I brought it home and slid it onto the TBRRS (To be read relatively soon) stack. There are cover blurbs by Russel Banks, Kurt Vonnegut and Donald Barthelme, which added to the intrigue.

In the event, the book was quite enjoyable. This was Berman's first novel. According to wikipedia, it's also his only published novel, although he's published many short stories over the years. The book is well written, good descriptions, well conceived, imaginitive concepts. The only issue I take with it is that from about the quarter mark to around the three-quarters point, the story is shared by two characters who spend way too much time bickering. Although it is realistic to suppose that two people wandering post-apocalyptic America together would eventually begin to get on each other's nerves, it become a bit tedious in the reading. But the final quarter of the book, including the ending, are quite good. ( )
  rocketjk | Jul 28, 2013 |
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