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The Plot Against America

The Plot Against America

Philip Roth


A carefully-constructed counterfactual of a fictional Lindbergh presidency and of America's descent into fascism – before being saved from itself by the entreaties of a revered and bereaved widow. It's clever and evocatively written from the perspective of a 9-year-old surrogate of Roth himself, and so convincing that the author feels the need to include a summary of the real historical figures he mentions as an appendix.

Reading this book in 2023 brings out some echoes that perhaps wouldn't have been apparent on an earlier reading. There's a lot of consideration of fake news, of misinformation and questionable government initiatives, and even of a "Big Lie" that populists and fabulists can lock onto. And it's shocking that some the anti-Semitism that existed before and during the war still exists today, in an increasingly-less-camouflaged form.

3/5. Finished 01 April 2023.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

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