The Nix by Nathan Hill


I still don’t know where to start when it comes to talking about this book.
Let me put it this way; there’s an awful lot going on in this book and the writing may come across a bit WORDY, yes, wordy. (I actually stole the word my reading buddy used to describe this book, sorry!)
Getting back to the subject, I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars – I really enjoyed this book, yet this book stopped short of toppling my world and perspective upside down, thus a ducked star; it was pretty close, yet not a straight-up 5 stars book for me.

There is one thing I really need to point out about this book; THE WRITING. The writing is what makes this book so special and unique. As I mentioned earlier, it is wordy at times, yet it is also very descriptive and powerful. I also sensed somewhat like sarcasm and witticism running through the entire book and it made me giggle and laugh out loud at times.

I am pretty sure that many of those who have read this book adore Chapter 4, ‘Argumentum Verbosium’ part. To be perfectly honest, I LOVE the entire chapter, but this particular part, ‘Argumentum Verbosium’ is something you can’t miss. This is the part where the author’s uncanny talent in writing starts to shine – he wondrously and amazingly delineates through his writing how teenage girls would talk – gushing out whatever they have to say and not letting anyone cut in. It was so funny and hilarious.

By the same token, a certain chapter (which comes later in the book) literally blew me away; I have never come across an author who is capable of writing nearly THE WHOLE CHAPTER without stopping – I mean, the second sentence goes on and on and on until the end of the chapter! Trust me, it’ll blow you away when you read it.

The characters are all fleshed out really nicely, they all felt very realistic and grounded. They are a bit dysfunctional and broken in their own way, but surprisingly enough, there are only a few of them who I ended up not liking.

Story-wise, I thought it is very complicated, yet beautifully and intricately crafted.
Right from the beginning, I knew he is a kind of author who spends an enormous amount of pages and time on the character development as well as carefully building up the story. True to form, the end product, the book is quite chunky and voluminous. That being said though, the plot is really gripping and interesting, it kept me turning pages without losing momentum.

I thought it was amazing that the author pulled off putting all the branched out story-lines together beautifully and nicely in the end.
As there are so many things going on in this book with two-main story lines –one with Samuel and the other with Fayne in addition to the timelines going back and forth back and forth between 1968 and 2011, I didn’t actually lose track of the story, but I slowly and gradually began to wonder how the author was going to wrap everything up. Like I said, the story branched out into so many directions which seemed disparate and unrelated, so I was amazed to see (not really ‘see,’ it’s actually ‘read’) how nicely everything is entwined in the end.
However, you’ll need to be patient until you reach that point; it takes time for everything to come together. You will need to trust the author, resist your gut-instinct to drop it and just keep going.

The last part (‘Deleverage’) was such a page-turner; I literally gobbled up the last 100 pages. With the intense, descriptive writing, it was so gripping and engaging, I just couldn’t put it down.

Having said that, I must say that I was a bit caught off guard by how it ends.
With all the underlining sarcasm and witticism plus a wicked sense of humor, I was expecting a bit grimmer and darker ending. I wasn’t expecting the direction this book took as it drew near the end, I was a bit taken aback yet now I think it was a fitting end.

I think this is a grand story of ‘redemption’ and ‘second chance.’
Although all the characters, particularly the main two characters, Samuel and Fayne go through a lot in the story, the place where they have reached and stands is quite satisfactory.

Despite its length, it’s definitely worth a read. There’s no doubt that the author has an excellent flair in writing, I can vouch for that. It was a humorous, funny and exhilarating read. Highly recommend it.


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