Book Review – Big Fish

Big Fish
Daniel Wallace
Penguin Books
Publication Date: 2004


“He could outrun anybody, and he never missed a day of school. He saved lives, tamed giants. Animals loved him. People loved him. Women loved him (and he loved them back). And he knew more jokes than any man alive.”

“Now, as he lies dying, Edward Bloom can’t seem to stop telling jokes -or the tall tales that have made him, in his son’s eyes, an extraordinary man. Big Fish is the story of this man’s life, told as a series of legends and myths inspired by the few facts his son, William, knows. Through these tales -hilarious and wrenching, tender and outrageous- William begins to understand his elusive father’s great feats, and his great failings.” ~ via Goodreads

If there were ever a book that could hook me in the first two pages, this is the one. Actually, the first two pages of this book are by far the best first two pages of any book that I’ve ever read and that’s the truth. I read, re-read, read to my husband and read those two pages to myself (yes, again) so many times before I allowed myself to get much past the third chapter. If you don’t know what I am talking about because you’ve not read this book, I urge you to read just those two first pages and see for yourself. I know it’s not just me because my husband agreed – those two pages can really get to your core. Without giving it all away… perspective…

Ok, now that that’s off my chest, how about the rest of this book? We are off to a grand start, right? It must be good, right?

I am happy to say that Big Fish does not disappoint. Perhaps my favorite part of the book will forever lie within those first two very meaningful pages but the story of Edward Bloom, told through his son William, is a magical, mythical, and special one. Edward has lived a life full of wild adventures that may or may not be exaggerated. And that’s hardly the point… Edward is now at the end of his life and now William, struggling to understand his father must find a way to acceptance.

Was his father a great man? Was Edward Bloom a good father?

Edward Bloom is certainly larger than life, as are his fantastic tales. Reading them through the heart of William will take you through a series of emotions and even disbelief – I mean, he did claim to tame a giant, right? Some stories are wild, bright, fun and full of awe. Some are not. But every single tale is shared beautifully.

If you are a fan of this movie, read the book. If you haven’t seen the movie, read the book AND see the movie. Both are truly fantastic.

I give this big fish tale, 4 heartfelt stars!

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