29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Breath taking in its scope. An American classic.,
By A Customer
This review is from: Ragtime (Picador Books) (Paperback)
The first time I read Ragtime I was pregnant and so my over zealous enthusiasm for this book was put down to hormonial overload by everyone who knew me. I have since given birth, regained hormonal stability and re-read the book. It's even better second time around. It's a true "can't put it down" classic, leaping from chapter to chapter, pulling you through the Ragtime era of American history. The characters, all famously fimilar, ranging from Henry Ford to Harry Houndi, are alive and accesable. Each character, almost juicy with the richness of the writing, interlink with each other in a (visualise here!) family tree of a story. Each branch touching another. The plot, dark, heartbreaking, original, and massive - involves a typical family, or so they think. As the story evolves you catch your breath, and find youself shouting plaintive "noooooo"'s as each chapter ends. The subject matter on the surface seems heavy, and to a less skilled writer than Doctorow, taboo (racisim, child abandonment,terrorism); but don't be put off if it's just a good read you're after.Trust me, if I could buy this book for you I would. Yes, it's been made into a film. Yes, it's been made into a musical and a very good job they did too, but the detail and the real story's in the book. Enjoy.