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Going after Cacciato

O'Brien, Tim

10,471 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0224016261 / ISBN 13: 9780224016261
Published by Jonathan Cape, London, 1978
Condition: Very Good+ Hardcover
From Craig Hokenson Bookseller (Dallas, TX, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Nice and tight, but soiling to top and bottom page edges. Price clipped. Bookseller Inventory # 32158

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Going after Cacciato

Publisher: Jonathan Cape, London

Publication Date: 1978

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Very Good+

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good+

Edition: First British Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

Tim O'Brien - Going After Cacciato - Jonathan Cape 1978 - 1st UK Edition 1st Printing - "First Published...1978" stated on copyright page with no mention of later printings. A near fine copy with minor edge wear and some spotting to edges of the text block in a near fine dust jacket which is a touch shelf worn and is clipped by publisher with new price sticker on front flap. A very pleasing example of this scarce and important O'Brien title which was the winner of the National Book Award.

Review:

"In October, near the end of the month, Cacciato left the war."

In Tim O'Brien's novel Going After Cacciato the theater of war becomes the theater of the absurd as a private deserts his post in Vietnam, intent on walking 8,000 miles to Paris for the peace talks. The remaining members of his squad are sent after him, but what happens then is anybody's guess: "The facts were simple: They went after Cacciato, they chased him into the mountains, they tried hard. They cornered him on a small grassy hill. They surrounded the hill. They waited through the night. And at dawn they shot the sky full of flares and then they moved in.... That was the end of it. The last known fact. What remained were possibilities."

It is these possibilities that make O'Brien's National Book Award-winning novel so extraordinary. Told from the perspective of squad member Paul Berlin, the search for Cacciato soon enters the realm of the surreal as the men find themselves following an elusive trail of chocolate M&M's through the jungles of Indochina, across India, Iran, Greece, and Yugoslavia to the streets of Paris. The details of this hallucinatory journey alternate with feverish memories of the war--men maimed by landmines, killed in tunnels, engaged in casual acts of brutality that would be unthinkable anywhere else. Reminiscent of Joseph Heller's Catch-22, Going After Cacciato dishes up a brilliant mix of ferocious comedy and bleak horror that serves to illuminate both the complex psychology of men in battle and the overarching insanity of war. --Alix Wilber

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