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The Little Book    by Selden Edwards order for
Little Book
by Selden Edwards
Order:  USA  Can
Plume, 2009 (2009)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

A beguiling novel that took three decades to write, The Little Book takes the reader back to Vienna at the end of the 19th century. The novel's protagonist, Wheeler Burden, finds himself whisked from San Francisco in 1988 to the Austrian city that was the epicenter of European intellectual and political life in 1897.

In what follows, a smattering of famous personalities - from Sigmund Freud and a young Adolf Hitler to Mark Twain - share center stage with the man from San Francisco. At the heart of this time-travel adventure is the unraveling of the secrets of the Burden family's past and how the eccentric clan influenced some of the major events of the 20th century.

Explaining the challenge of writing a book of this nature and why it took this long, Selden Edwards said, 'I kept rewriting and revising every 5-6 years or so, and sending it out. With each rejection, after getting over the depression, I added more layers and more complexity.'

I think this perhaps explains why The Little Book is a little more demanding than the average work of fiction you'll find available today. It is important to remember, though, that if you have to put a little more concentration into a book you are reading, the payoff, what you get out of it, can be far greater and the total experience more rewarding. I believe you'll discover this multi-layered novel is well worth a little extra effort, so give Edwards enough time to work his magic as he returns to a very special time in Viennese history.

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