this is a combo book. the first part is a memoir, then there are 3 plays and 1 detective novel. i have thus far not really liked paul auster's writing all that much, but i liked his memoir. the first of the 3 plays i liked the best, and know that it needs some kind of graduate class in existentialism to really understand, but i liked what i think he was getting at. the other two plays much less so, although i'm sure they're also really brilliant in their esoteric way, they're just too esoteric for me. the novel was so different from his usual style that i should have loved it, but it was so overwritten. i think this was probably intentional, and as i don't read many private i books, i can't make a comparison. i read a bit of it out loud and it sounded like the voiceover from who framed roger rabbit - that kind of overblown language, overuse of metaphors, etc. but compelling enough to keep reading. and i always enjoy his baseball references and how much he obviously loves the game.