I first read Solomon Gursky Was Here in 1990, shortly after it was first published, and I have now reread it in 2009. Almost 20 years later, I still find it rich in story and character, and both sly and pointed in its commentaries on religion, politics, commerce, culture, human relationships, and what it means to forge one's individual identity in the world. Ironically, the theme of identity is driven home by the title character, who makes few actual appearances in the book, and is elusive and constantly shape-shifting. Oh, and Richler's take on the iconic Franklin expedition is still brilliant and memorable.

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