Louis Holland arrives in Boston in a spring of ecological upheaval (a rash of earthquakes on the North Shore) and odd luck: the first one kills his grandmother. Louis tries to maintain his independence, but falls in love with a Harvard seismologist whose discoveries about the earthquakes' cause complicate everything.
©1992 Jonathan Franzen (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I liked the unraveling of the background story with the various members of the family (past and present).
Louis. I really did not enter the thinking of the others. Franzen's writing has a satirical quality that never really lets you sympathize completely with his characters.
I think his performance was the weakest part of the experience of listening to this book. The sister, who is graduating with a Harvard MBA is made to sound like an insecure, dumb teenager. He mispronounces many of the place names, which is unfortunate. Peabody is pronounced "PEA-buddy" not pea-BODY. Somehow he gets "Nahant" right. The first half of the book is read with a snarky, sardonic tone and he calms down later in the book..
.Not really. I think it would end up feeling like a remake of "A Civil Action"
I enjoy JF's books. I expect them to be long and complex. I thought the whole anti-abortion side story did not add anything to this story. I'm not sure what it had to do with the plot. I did learn about earthquakes and seismology, which I did not expect. The best part of the book was the father talking about his political beliefs. I wish the father had been a much more visible and vocal contributor to the plot. He had some really great insights.
Less "relationship drama". Some serious editing. Better character development. I love long stories, but this was tedious.
He was the only reason I stuck with the story as long as I did. He's a good narrator.
There were glimmers and hints of a good story but it was so buried under the emotional minutia I just didn't care any more.
I really tried to stick with this. Even though three hours in I didn’t really care about the characters, was even sick to death of them after the first hour. Two page descriptions of a characters’ pronouncement of love for another…? It was like watching an artsy foreign film without subtitles and really bad acting. I just wanted it to stop. There may be a story in there somewhere but I couldn’t waste anymore time trying to get to it. The narration was pretty good. The premise of the story seemed interesting enough. But the execution…not so much.
I have nothing to offer anyone except my own confusion.
It's an outstanding story, with great character development and an ability to at least explain both sides of several social issues dealt with in a rational and well thought out manner (though the author's actual stance on any such issue is never left to the imagination).
Any of Franzen's other novels. It's what he does.
His ability to show the proper emotion at the proper times.
Well no, but only because it was over 20 hours.
If you liked "The Corrections" give this one a try.
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