Herman Wouk, author of 1950s blockbusters like “The Caine Mutiny” and “Marjorie Morningstar,” returns with a novel made of text messages, e-mails and Skype transcripts.
Old enough to remember Simon and Schuster as actual people (“they were as different as chalk and cheese”), Mr. Wouk has written a novel that is startling in its modernity, at least in terms of format. “The Lawgiver,” which arrives on Tuesday, weaves a comedic yarn using letters, text messages, memos, Variety articles, e-mails and Skype transcripts. An epistolary novel, he decided, was the only way to tackle a subject he had spent decades trying to crack: Moses.
“In terms of narrative, my boy, there’s nothing but the Bible for sheer storytelling,” Mr. Wouk (pronounced woke) said. “How do you get at something that has already been done so perfectly? I suppose that explains part of my ‘fixation,’ as you put it.”