The last decade has been an eye opener for me regarding the broad expanse of subject matter in novels around the world, the novelists and their work in faraway lands, and the styles of writing.
American writing differs from that of most other nations, it seems to me, in that American novelists have given much popular fiction the feel of cinema. Not so elsewhere; outside these borders skillfully wrought narrative rules the day, while we here seem to like lots of dialogue.
Mischa Berlinski’s fine novel, Fieldwork, captures the narrative style as it gives us a story, leaning toward mystical realism, of life in a distant culture. Books have always been the avenues of travel, of trips into the minds of others, into the workings of other cultures.
So much we can learn of life sitting in an easy chair at day’s end and reading.