A Doubter's Almanac: A Novel
by Ethan Canin
Hardcover- $8.08

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In this mesmerizing novel, Ethan Canin, the author of America America and The Palace Thief, explores the ...

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  "Doubt I Would Want to Read It Again" by nbaker (see profile) 05/16/17

In all honesty, I struggled with this book on many different levels. To begin with, I have always thought of myself as somewhat mathematically inclined, but when the author started throwing out all these advanced math theories – ones that only a select handful of living adults would know, I began to feel extremely inadequate to the point of feeling on the verge of illiterate. My one saving grace was that it appears someone as intellectually gifted as Milo Andret (and eventually his two children Hans and Pauline and then Hans’ children) is that they seemed to lack the ability to enjoy life in their quest to find rhyme, reason and logic even in the simple act of breathing. While not a true story, I am convinced there is much truth in this story. It is mind boggling (pardon the pun), to think of the reasoning power and pure vision that a so-called genius or mathematical wizard possesses. To be able see objects outside their form, to sense the atomical structure of lines and masses without a visual guide must be an amazing feeling. It was sad, to the point of being depressing, however, to also see that their minds were so continuously occupied by the workings of time and space that it was difficult for them to relax, to enjoy the little things in life. Thus, it became apparent that a stimulus must be provided to either awaken or close their senses at times – and that stimulus proved to be drugs and/or alcohol.

This was a story of what a normal person could only describe as an atypical and dysfunctional family. In reality it was a rough and rugged journey with a gifted and genius family trying to survive in what seemed to them a dysfunctional world.

Milot Andret was a genius. He bred genius children who bred genious grandchildren. Milot was accomplished, respected and revered for his knowledge and foresight. Milot was despised, misunderstood and much avoided as a husband, father and friend. I know the quote says that knowledge is power, but for this reader, I shall remain satisfied with a bit less knowledge and a bit more contentment.

This was not a book I would necessarily recommend and yet I am glad I read it, glad I experienced the journey with this family and glad I have a raised awareness and appreciation for those whose brains are an open book for infinite wisdom and learning.

  "" by tiffdavies (see profile) 11/12/17

  "" by ebach (see profile) 04/24/19

THE DOUBTER’S ALMANAC is a good story, but the storytelling is dull.

  "" by [email protected] (see profile) 01/23/20

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