The chapters are narrated from the points of view of different characters, therefore you get immersed in their thoughts fully, sometimes in the form of a diary, sometimes each chapter by a different character, and always discovering their past, discovering what made them who they are today. What is going on in the present is not mentioned as much as what has happened in the past, because the actual beginning and the development of their story is in the past; but the present is the resolution of their approximately 10-year long story, therefore the development and the resolution goes hand in hand in the book.
Miles is best described by his father in the late chapters of the book, when Morris talks about Miles’ love for Pilar:
“…it made sense for him to be in love with someone that age, for the boy’s life has been stunted, cut off from its proper and natural development, and although he looks like a full-grown man, his inner self is stuck somewhere around eighteen or nineteen.”
But I found Miles (and Pilar) to have been secretly exaggerated in every way, I didn’t realize it until I stopped reading and thought about it. Miles remembers calculus from his high school years (all those years from a very long ago), he knows quantum physics and teaches it to and discusses with Pilar, he is massively knowledgeable in literature, he is a photographer, he is very handsome, he is this, he is that… I get it, Auster created Miles to be the ultimate character, good at everything, because he loves the idea. But it doesn’t suit the rest of this very realistic book.
The story is very depressing; not that nothing good happens, but the souls of the characters are already damaged heavily and very delicate, therefore easily breaking. Near the end of the book, it becomes exhausting. And the end of the book, well... It felt insignificant, if not a little incomplete.
Overall, Sunset Park is interesting and you keep going on, but it is not a masterpiece. The main thing you’re happy with is the narrating skills of the writer. Even if it's your first time reading Paul Auster, you feel you’re in good hands.