Bookathon: The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing

Book Eight
Starting Time: 1:15 am
Sleeping Time: 3:10 am – 10:45 am
Ending Time: 12:08 pm

Title: The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation: Volume 1: The Pox Party
Author: M. T. Anderson
Genre: Historical fiction
Pages: 351
Summary: Octavian has been raised as a bizarre science experiment his entire life, but as the Revolutionary War explodes around him, he begins to question his place in the world – not as a specimen, but as a human being.
Thoughts: This is a brilliantly-written, deeply-disturbing book. Like, I went to bed in the middle of it and had to think really hard about ponies and sunshine in order to keep myself from having nightmares. It absolutely captures the style of late 18th-century American writings and delves deep into the horrible, hypocritical debates about slavery that cropped up during a war supposedly fought for liberty and equality. There’s not much plot and a whole lot more agonized philosophy, which isn’t really to my taste, but it is a very good book.

Four cupcakes

    3 Responses to “Bookathon: The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing”

    1. Roshni says:

      So I know this review was published like 7 months ago, but was Octavian a black protaganist or was he white? This sounds really awesome, but I’m a little wary of any book that delves into slavery but focuses excusively (or even mostly) on white people.

    2. Jessica says:

      Roshni: He’s black. Sorry, probably should have made that clear! I am totally with you on the “narratives about slavery shouldn’t focus on white people” thing.

    3. Anastacia says:

      I’ve seen this book in my library and thought about getting it… Now that I’ve read your reveiw, I WILL check it out, read it, then come back and comment!

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