The Lincoln Highway

The Lincoln Highway is a book worth reading , at least twice.  And it is absolutely worth listening to. I really liked this book. But I must add that I did not like the ending. I cannot tell you why without ruining the end of the story. The characters are amazing. Emmett is strong and good. His young brother Billy is funny and brilliant and straightforward. Wooley is needy and loving. And Duchess, oh Duchess… he is a man of many virtues and vices.  And of course, there is Sally. She, like Billy is straightforward, funny and devoted. They travel together in a blue Studebaker or attempt to, along the Lincoln Highway, which by the way is a real place. The journey is to go from Nebraska viaTimes Square to the Legion of Honor Museum in San Francisco in time to arrive for the fireworks on the Fourth of July in 1954. 

“Most of us shell our days like peanuts. One in a thousand can look at the world with amazement," Towles wrote in his first novel. Of course, Towles is drawn to that one in a thousand. His interest is in those whose zeal has not yet been tamped down by what Duchess (the only first-person narrator) describes, with improbable flair for a poorly-educated 18-year-old, as "the thumb of reality on that spot in the soul from which youthful enthusiasm springs." With the exception of Woolly, the teenagers in this novel are remarkably mature by today's standards, and burdened by cares. But at any age, it's the young-at-heart who are most open to amazement — people like Woolly, who may not be cut out for this world but who can appreciate what he calls a "one-of-a-kind of day."

There's so much to enjoy in this generous novel packed with fantastic characters — male and female, black and white, rich and poor — and filled with digressions, magic tricks, sorry sagas, retributions, and the messy business of balancing accounts. "How easily we forget — we in the business of storytelling — that life was the point all along," Towles' oldest character comments as he heads off on an unexpected adventure. It's something Towles never forgets.” npr reviewer

I wrote down these excerpts as I was enjoying the book…….things for me to savor and think about later.  This is most definitely a “One of a kind book”!!!

From Ulysses…… everything worth value in this life is something that is 

earned. Earn the right to hope.

The narrowing of life at the far tip of the diamond…  All heroes pass the five points thru life and earn theirreward

Moments with other people

 Landmarks of your life?

A one of a kind kind of day…wooley

What is kindness, but the performance of an act that is both beneficial to another and unrequited.

Born with no peripheral vision