Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats

Monday, October 2, 2023

“Birnam Wood” by Eleanor Catton

Sam read this book recently and loved it. And a few years back I read Catton's The Luminaries and really enjoyed that (although I never did get into the TV series, for some reason). So, with motivation both internal and external, I figured I needed to read this book too. 

Well, I didn’t love it like Sam did, but I'm not really sure why. It is a pretty compelling story, and basically what I think could be considered a literary thriller. It's about a group of young socialist gardeners in New Zealand (they call their group Birnam Wood) and what happens when they align themselves with someone who is basically an Elon Musk-esque American billionaire. 

My favorite thing about this book was the fact that the characters had some really interesting and intelligent conversations. Specifically, my favorite quote was this: Democracy isn't about everyone voting the exact same way, it's about whether you agree to go along with the outcome of the vote even if it turns out you're in the minority. 

Hmmmm, I wonder who that was directed towards??

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