I'll get right to the point: I was disappointed with Fugitive Pieces. Most of the book is the story of Jakob, who is orphaned during the holocaust, and taken in by a Greek scholar named Athos. After the war they move to Canada, and Jakob grows up to become a poet. Then, about 2/3 of the way through the book, the narrative shifts to Ben, a young professor whose life briefly intersects with Jakob's.
I had high expectations for this Orange Prize winner written by a well-known poet. The language was, indeed, lovely. Jakob's story in particular was well told and poignant in parts. But that wasn't enough for me. By and large, I failed to identify with the characters, and didn't care much about the outcome of their lives and relationships. ( )