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  • Published: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2010.
  • Year Published: 2010
  • Edition: 1st ed.
  • Description: 562 p. ; 24 cm.
  • Language: English
  • Format: Book

ISBN/Standard Number

  • 9780374158460 (alk. paper)
  • 0374158460 (alk. paper)
  • 0312600844


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by Franzen, Jonathan.

There are currently 4 available

Where To Find It

Call number: Fiction

Available Copies: Downtown 2nd Floor, Traverwood Adult

Additional Details

The idyllic lives of civic-minded environmentalists Patty and Walter Berglund come into question when their son moves in with aggressive Republican neighbors, green lawyer Walter takes a job in the coal industry, and go-getter Patty becomes increasingly unstable and enraged.

Community Reviews

unnecessarily long marathon

This is a marathon of a novel that was at least 30% too long. The overall tone is angry, depressing, and very bitter. While the author is adept at satirizing nuances of life in 2010 America (where people use credit cards to buy a pack of gum: "I mean, cash is so yesterday"), he preaches and bemoans and belabors everything. Like my mother at her worst, he says everything three times.

I listened to this BOCD, rather than reading the hard copy book. It was very hard to take the reader's snotty, bitter tone for 25 hours. Perhaps without his whining voice I would have felt better about the book. As it is, I simply feel I slogged through a compulsory reading, pushing to the end in the hopes that something would redeem it. Nothing did.

A Good Read!

For me, the glue that holds this book together is its colorful cast of characters. I'm no expert but the plot seemed slow to develop and sluggish once it did. There may have been one or two too many sidebars and subplots, but I wanted to follow these people around and see what they were going to do or say next, They really jumped off the page. I can't remember the last book I read that had such memorable characters.

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