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July, July | [Tim O'Brien]

July, July

Tim O'Brien is widely acclaimed as our finest chronicler of the Vietnam War and its aftermath. In his compelling new novel, this American master returns to his signature themes (passion, memory, and yearning) in a brilliant ensemble piece. July, July tells the heart-rendering and often hilarious story of a group of men and women who came into adulthood at a moment when American ideals and innocence began to fade.
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Publisher's Summary

Tim O'Brien is widely acclaimed as our finest chronicler of the Vietnam War and its aftermath. In his compelling new novel, this American master returns to his signature themes (passion, memory, and yearning) in a brilliant ensemble piece. July, July tells the heart-rendering and often hilarious story of a group of men and women who came into adulthood at a moment when American ideals and innocence began to fade.

At the 30th reunion of Minnesota's Darton Hall College class of 1969, 10 old friends join their classmates for a July weekend of dancing, drinking, flirting, reminiscing, and regretting. The three decades since their graduation have seen marriage and divorce, children and careers, hopes deferred and abandoned. Two best friends toast their ex-husbands with vodka and set out for a good time. A damaged war veteran opens his soul to a Republican trophy wife recovering from a radical mastectomy. An overweight mop manufacturer with a large yet failing heart reignites his passion for a hyperkinetic housewife. And whispering in the background is the elusive Johnny Ever, part cynical angel, part conscience, the cosmic soul of ages past and ages future.

Winner of the National Book Award for his classic novel Going After Cacciato, Tim O'Brien once again strikes at the emotional nerve center of our lives. With humor and a sense of wistful hope, July, July speaks directly to our unique American character and our unique resilience.

©2002 Tim O'Brien; (P)2002 Houghton Mifflin Company

What the Critics Say

"Experienced audiobook reader Sanders offers a smooth and knowing delivery. His cynical, dry, yet humorous tone perfectly matches O'Brien's prose." (Publishers Weekly)
"Jay O. Sanders does not attempt different voices for different characters, yet he modulates his tones so skillfully that you always know who is speaking and why." (AudioFile)

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    Stephen l, PA, United States 11-11-08
    Stephen l, PA, United States 11-11-08 Member Since 2001
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    "Not my Favorite"

    Tim O'Brien is one of America's greatest literary talents. He speaks eloquently for those of us who came to maturity in the late 60s and early 70s, and especially for those of us who struggled with the issues presented by the war in Vietnam. But this book -- I don't know what to say. If I view the damaged souls of his class of '69 as metaphor, then maybe it works, but it's a stretch. These people are a depressing mess who need badly to get over themselves, and to me, they are just not very real. If they are, I sure don't want to hang out with them at their class reunion. I hope for Mr. O'Brien that this is more ironic fantasy than it is reflective of any personal experience. Ugh.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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