This Pulitzer-winning novel is pure excellence. It’s literary in a wry, self-aware sort of way and is among the best family sagas written. The novel details three generations of the Stephanides family as the elders pass down narrator Cal’s genetic mutation. I think this might be the only fiction I’ve read with an intersex protagonist. Please recommend me more. Gender identity is one theme: the American Dream, immigration and assimilation are also deftly displayed. Social commentary successfully plays through the Greek epic allusions.
The narrative is impressive. It’s a mix of sardonic wit and verbosity, imagining details and events at which the narrator couldn’t have been present. He acknowledges his fabrications; when omnisciently recounting his father’s thoughts moments before his death in a car accident it feels like magic realism has taken over. There’s just a great ‘LOOK I’M DOING A BOOK’ attitude about this novel which I loved.
Middlesex is a modern classic.