Reading Paul Auster’s City of Glass gives you a feeling rather like you get when you stand between two mirrors; reflections disappear off into infinity, and no matter how hard you look you can’t really see where it all ends. That’s because the book’s central character is a crime writer named Dan Quinn who has become a private investigator, who then encounters both Paul Auster and Paul Auster the detective.
Confused? You should be. But while this multi-layered meta approach might sound like it is too tricky to be entertaining, City of Glass is actually a very enjoyable read, with as many thrills as any good detective tome.
Here’s the plot: Quinn receives a phone call in the middle of the night, which sets him off on what he believes will be his next case. As he goes deeper into the investigation he becomes tangled up in it, and then with a mysterious woman. Soon finds he is no longer solving a mystery but becoming part of it himself. The question is: can he escape?
Anyway, all this is just a prequel to saying that now the book has been turned into a stage show on at HOME – which is good news for fans of Auster’s work. And the good news continues, because 59 Productions have co-created it, which means it won’t only be a theatre piece but also a hi-tech production.
Chances are good that you’ve seen 59 Productions’ work before, with MIF commission wonder.land, box office smash War Horse and musical An American in Paris on their resumé. Their cinematic, layered approach should be perfect for capturing the crazy and occasionally claustrophobic nature of the novel.