Hari Kunzru
Gods Without Men
February 04, 2019 Comments.. 336
Gods Without Men Gods Without Men is Hari Kunzru s epic novel of intertwined lives and a vast expanse of American desert In the Californian desert A four year old boy goes missing A British rock star goes quietly mad

  • Title: Gods Without Men
  • Author: Hari Kunzru
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 292
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Gods Without Men is Hari Kunzru s epic novel of intertwined lives and a vast expanse of American desert In the Californian desert .A four year old boy goes missing.A British rock star goes quietly mad.An alien worshipping cult is born.An Iraqi teenager takes part in a war game.In a remote town, near a rock formation known as The Pinnacles, lives intertwine, storieGods Without Men is Hari Kunzru s epic novel of intertwined lives and a vast expanse of American desert.In the Californian desert .A four year old boy goes missing.A British rock star goes quietly mad.An alien worshipping cult is born.An Iraqi teenager takes part in a war game.In a remote town, near a rock formation known as The Pinnacles, lives intertwine, stories echo, and the universal search for meaning and connection continues Kunzru s great American novel Independent Readers speak of it in hushed tones as conveying the secrets of the universe Newsday Extraordinary, smart, innovative, a revelation Has the counterculture feel of a late 1960s US campus hit something by Vonnegut or Pynchon or Wolfe Genuinely interesting and exhilarating Extremely enjoyable Guardian Astonishing, mind blowing One of the most original novels I ve read in years Counterpunch One of the most socially observant and skilful novelists around Consistently gripping and entertaining Literary Review A great sprawling narrative, as vast as the canvas on which it is written Washington Post Reverberates long after you finish reading it New YorkerHari Kunzru is the author of the novels The Impressionist, Transmission, My Revolutions and Gods Without Men, and the story collection Noise He lives in New York.

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      Posted by:Hari Kunzru
      Published :2019-02-04T08:27:41+00:00

    1 Blog on “Gods Without Men

    1. Lori says:

      This is all about Coyote. While there a lot of interesting characters in this beautifully written story, they all revolve around the trickster. He needs people. By hook or by crook, his shabby bad self will have worshippers. He’s the genii loci of the Pinnacle rock-formation in the Mojave Desert. So, he keeps coming up with ploys to bring followers to him and his place. This is a Coyote story. And, Coyote asks his penis for advice because it is the smarter of the two. It’s there before the c [...]

    2. switterbug (Betsey) says:

      There’s a sense of both turbulence and utter stillness in Kunzru’s latest novel, and a feeling of vastness and confinement. Spanning 250 years, (non-linearly), the story takes place largely in the xeric and sparsely populated Mojave Desert, at the high-energy Pinnacles, or three-fingered rock formations. The people who populate this novel tend to be restive fringe dwellers, a colorful cast of alien, isolated, and even immortal characters. A Franciscan priest, an anthropologist, hippies, drug [...]

    3. FrankH says:

      The title is lifted from text in a Honore Balzac short story, but the vibration here -- resonating with themes embracing UFO-ology, quant stock-trading models, cultural clashes and all manner of odd latter-day convergences -- is a long way from 19th century France. In another, more recent era, Gods Without Men might have been labeled 'druggy', edgy, Pynchon-like; today, the author Kunzru seems to be saying, we don't need the drugs to induce the drug-induced consciousness: Just start connecting t [...]

    4. Liviu says:

      Gods without men is a very fascinating book though it left me a little dissapointed in the end as I expected more coherence.It is easier to set up an intriguing premise and throw in more and more complications and tantalizing stuff but harder to either bring some sense of completion or just keep things rolling but performing a magic trick on the reader so he or she is happy enough with the local resolutions.David Mitchell did it in his masterpiece Cloud Atlas to which Gods without men compares - [...]

    5. Ken Feucht says:

      If Hari Kunzru released a sequel to "Gods Without Men," I would read it in a second. I enjoyed reading the stories of several characters across time focused around a rock formation in the Nevada desert. It's just that the stories didn't end. The main story is sold as being about a couple whose son disappears in the desert and returns "changed." The problem is, the son returns in the last sixth of the book. His story is never really explored.The same is true of a teenaged Iraqi girl whose back st [...]

    6. Brenda Ayala says:

      I frankly don't see what the big deal is about this book. I understand the concept Kunzru was saying. I really do. But I hated this book. I finished it and all I could think was I wasted my time. Frankly, I didn't care about any of the characters. His style was stupid. He introduced us to huge amounts of characters, gave them elaborate backstories that explained how they got to wherever they were, then never mentions them again. What's the point? I now know about Dawn, the woman who joined a cou [...]

    7. StevenGodin says:

      Beautifully written, thought provoking and highly original, just a few ways to describe Kunzru's perplexing novel. Mainly set in the blistering heat of the Mojave desert around a rock formation known as the pinnacles, that strangely draws people to it's location for mysterious reasons. You really feel like you are actually there in the blazing sun the vast and desolate landscapes. The further you get into it, the more captivating and page-turning it gets, and by the end I was left with a great s [...]

    8. Jennifer says:

      I loved every last crazy component in this one - the hippie cult making drone music to contact aliens, the old Indian legends that may or may not have come to life, the British rock star trying to get the Laurel Canyon thing, the NY family caught between cultures and stock market crashes, the droll parody of an American military base with an Iraqi girl having to play a fictionalized version of her old life every story could've been a full novel on its own, but together they create a time-trippi [...]

    9. Tuck says:

      an incredible novel of modern times usa. a filthy rich physicist slash wall street trader and his writerly stay at home wife and their autistic boy take a trip to mojave desert to sort their shit out because family is disintegrating. they end up in what turns out to be a power center of the universe (who knew?) where novel bops back and forth from 1950's cult leader building a communications device to talk with all the helpful aliens who want to tell us earthlings how to live and 1500's spanish [...]

    10. Sofia says:

      The best novel I read in a long time and I doubt it'll be topped by anything else this year. I can't believe this book didn't get more attention. I mean, if you like Jennifer Egan and/or David Mitchell you should not miss this. Kunzru does the whole novel of ideas across time and continents thing as Mitchell and his writing has the same refinement if you know what I mean. He also reminds me of Egan with his talent for writing multiple characters in unique and pitch-perfect voices. He steers away [...]

    11. Judy says:

      What could a UFO hippie cult, a British rock star, a Spanish Franciscan priest, the son of a Sikh and his autistic son have in common? The Mohave Desert, for one thing. A search for meaning that connects the earthbound physical plane with the spiritual, for another. In his fourth novel, Hari Kunzru confronts head on the quandries of modern life while walking a fine line between irony and emotion, between serious and lighthearted, without missing a step.He opens with a piece of flash fiction invo [...]

    12. Danny says:

      "I've been through the desert on a horse with no name, it felt good to be out of the rain." The lyrics to that song might as well be playing in the background as you read Gods Without Men, because it's all about the desert. In the middle of the Mojave there's a butte topped by three spires of rock called the Pinnacles. It's the sort of a place that has a power all its own, and the characters in this novel find themselves drawn there. Skipping through time, from Spanish missionaries in 1778 to a [...]

    13. James Murphy says:

      You don't often think of Moby-Dick in connection with the Mojave Desert. However, the white nothingness suggested by the whale is present in the vast empty waste of cactus, sand, wind, sun, and sky. The novelist Don DeLillo is present, too, because Hari Kunzru's Gods Without Men touches on many of the same themes DeLillo concerns himself with: a world defined by signs, some of them seen as sacred, paranoia, a connection between earth and sky, a connection between this world and the Land of the D [...]

    14. William Thomas says:

      Welcome to the brave new world of literature. Hari Kunzru squeezes himself into the Nu-Nu Literati by beat-boxing out what is mostly snippets of the life stories of, well, one too many people and throws in the odd sci-fi quirk for good measure, just so he can be named in the same sentence as Salman Rushdie when we compare this to something like Shalimar the Clown. Is this what you wanted, Hari? For me to put your name in the post-Gaddis, post-Vollman, post-Pynchon elite? Right there next to that [...]

    15. Marxist Monkey says:

      It might be too strong to call this a masterpiece. Yes, that would be too strong. It might be that my experience of this book has been too strongly effected by my own mild experience of alienation and exile over the past four months. It might be that the accident of my having just read Murakami and Eugenides and Riley has led me to exactly the place where this book could hit as hard as it did.What is it about? The longing for meaning. The anxiety of parenting. The illusion of meaning and the ill [...]

    16. George Ilsley says:

      With a cover blurb from David Mitchell, it is not surprising that this novel first evokes The Cloud Atlas. However, this novel skips back and forth and around and it can be hard to keep characters in mind. This book also posed a challenge to the marketing department. It is most often described as being about an autistic boy lost in the desert, and yes, this does happen. On page 190. Obviously the novel is about much more than that, and I suspect the marketing department was scared of mentioning [...]

    17. Arjun says:

      A kind of miracle. A plotless masterpiece. Well, no. There is a plot. It involves a rock formation in the desert. And an autistic boy. And some hippies. And, um, some redneck Indian hunters. No. Wait. This is a metaphysical book about our place in the world. About hope and loss. About humans trying to make sense of things. About feeling small in a big world. No. Wait. It's a book about what happens over the course of a few centuries around a rock formation in the desert in California. And God. O [...]

    18. David says:

      If there is a sequel to this book, I won't bother reading it. If you're 250 pages in and new characters are still being introduced and half developed, you're doing something wrong. In my opinion not one of the characters, time frames, or narratives were ever fully explained or finalized. It as if the author got bored with developing certain characters and moved on to others only to do the same, over and over. This is the first review I have posted here, but it just goes to show you how frustrati [...]

    19. Flor says:

      Stories within stories, I enjoyed the complexity. Some of the chapters are wonderfully engaging, but I found I had to struggle through others. If you look at the synopsis, you will understand why. Such a diverse cast of characters! So many intricately woven threads which ultimately result in an unfinished tapestry. Recommended for those with the patience, time and willingness to make connections, and the ability to accept being left with unsolved mysteries.

    20. Kim Horner McCoy says:

      With development and coherence, this could have been three really good novels. As it stands, it feels like notes for three good novels and one average episode of the X-Files.

    21. Ms.pegasus says:

      From Kunzru's imagination springs an octet of characters each viewing a fragment of their intertwined history. It is a history that spans the savagery of World War II ended by the atomic bomb, extra-terrestrial contact speculation like Roswell (1947), millenarian cults like Jim Jones' People's Temple, New Age counter-culture, and the rise of quant theory on Wall Street. The characters are not introduced chronologically; their life stories are told in fragments from each character's point of view [...]

    22. Mark Rice says:

      Gods Without Men was both compelling and frustrating. Hari Kunzru's descriptive writing is emotive and effective, as is his characterisation. My frustration stemmed from the various plotlines and timelines failing to be tied together to a coherent degree. In that respect, the book could be compared to a literary X-Files, as it leaves the reader to fill in substantial gaps with his/her imagination.The main characters are Raj Matharu (a four-year-old autistic boy) and his parents, Jaz (an American [...]

    23. Doug H says:

      I liked some aspects of this quite a lot. I admire the author for his uniquely pieced narrative style and for his ability to make the reader feel as though they are inhabiting his characters. Great descriptive language, unique and thoughtful fun style. If you like your literature postmodern, I highly recommend it. As for me, I might have liked it more if I'd read it when I was younger. I now prefer more straightforward narratives.

    24. Wanda says:

      Took me a while to plow through this metaphysical contemplation. I actually almost did not make it, but I kept going. Not going to waste a lot of time writing a review, except to say that it was self-indulgent mental meanderings that did not provoke any new insights or thought patterns in this reader. Glad it was a library borrow.

    25. Deborah says:

      4.5 I think. There are places where the writing is just what I want. There are places where the story just delivers. Overall, odd, quirky and engrossing.

    26. Cameron says:

      One of the best novels I've read in years.More tk.

    27. Lenny Wick says:

      Book-jacket comparisons to Pynchon and DeLillo do Kunzru no favors. He is actually more readable than they are, at least at a prose level, though he can't manage their heft. The true comparison, as others have noted, is to David Mitchell; if Kunzru doesn't ape various styles and genres to the same fidelity Mitchell does in Cloud Atlas, at least Gods Without Men has a point to what he's doing.It's a turgid novel, however. So many characters that don't seem to serve a point, so many flaky details [...]

    28. Michael says:

      This is a knock out of a book because he captured the main character of the book, the Mojave Desert in all its contradictions of desolation and consolation, fullness and barrenness, luxuriousness and starkness. It's a novel about misfits attracted to a mystical, hardscrabble place with a power all its own. I can think of only of Cormac McCarthy and Edward Abbey who also have managed to capture the desert in its brilliant extremes. Having grown up within spitting distance of the locale, Twentynin [...]

    29. Keith says:

      Sometimes, in fiction as in life, the parts do not always add up to a whole. Such is the problem with this deeply imagined and challenging book. It is a novel of many parts, most of it centered on the Mojave Desert and the hold the desert's sacred places have exerted on very differing sorts of pilgrims. The parts are illustrated with stories from as far back as 1775 to the present day. Nearly all whose stories are told are attracted to a specific rock formation in the desert. The book finds its [...]

    30. Bonnie Brody says:

      Gods Without Men tells about the mystery of the high desert in what is now San Bernardino County, California. Hari Kuzru is a masterful storyteller, weaving legend, Native American culture, hippie life and the disappearance of an autistic child into a compelling weave of interlocking narratives with the power of myth.The novel features a fantastic cast of characters who run through time from the late 1700's to 2009. What holds them all together is their connection to the mysteries of the high de [...]

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