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The Graduate | [Charles Webb]

The Graduate

When Benjamin Braddock graduates from college and moves back to his parents' house, everyone wants to know what he's going to do with his life. Embittered by the emptiness of his education and indifferent to his grim prospects, Benjamin falls haplessly into an affair with Mrs. Robinson, the relentlessly seductive wife of his father's business partner. It's only when her lovely daughter Elaine comes home to visit that Benjamin, now smitten, thinks he might have found some kind of direction in his life.
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Publisher's Summary

The basis for the acclaimed 1967 film, this novel about a naive college graduate adrift in the shifting social and sexual mores of the 1960s captures with hilarity and insight the alienation of youth and the disillusionment of an era.

When Benjamin Braddock graduates from college and moves back to his parents' house, everyone wants to know what he's going to do with his life. Embittered by the emptiness of his education and indifferent to his grim prospects, Benjamin falls haplessly into an affair with Mrs. Robinson, the relentlessly seductive wife of his father's business partner. It's only when her lovely daughter Elaine comes home to visit that Benjamin, now smitten, thinks he might have found some kind of direction in his life.

But Mrs. Robinson is having none of it. A wondrously fierce and absurd battle of wills ensues, with love and idealism triumphing over the forces of corruption and conformity.

©1994 Anti-Defamation League of B'nai Brith; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Brilliant...sardonic, ludicrously funny." (New York Times)
"His novel makes you want to laugh and it makes you want to cry." (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
"A highly gifted and accomplished writer." (Chicago Tribune)

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    Eric Houston, TX, United States 01-16-09
    Eric Houston, TX, United States 01-16-09 Member Since 2005
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    "Movie better"

    "What ?" I don't know how many times the characters say that but it becomes very annoying. In fact, all of the dialogue is strangely jerky and drown out and so is the delivery. If the reader had performed it organically I think it would have worked out better. Just didn't sound like any conversations I've ever had.

    I seldom read a book that was so improved by the movie. In the movie the struggle between the two generations is more apparent and of vital importance within the context of the Baby-boomer generation. I also found myself really disliking the Benjamin in the book. He carries on like a little b**** the whole time. He has few redeeming qualities. And I could never understand why Elian would be in love with him. For the book I'm left with a very strong feeling that the relationship is going to crash and burn. Within a few months one could readily imagine Elian married to Carl after all and Benjamin in boot camp.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
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