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9780007153589

How to be Alone

Franzen, Jonathan Author

9780007153589: How to be Alone

Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of 'The Corrections'. Jonathan Franzen's 'Freedom' was the literary sensation of 2010, whilst 'The Corrections' was the best-loved and most written-about novel the previous decade. 'How to be Alone', is a collection of the personal essays and painstaking, often humorous reportage that have earned Franzen a wide and loyal readership, including what has come to be known as 'The Harper's Essay', Franzen's controversial 1996 look at the fate of the novel. From the sex-advice industry to the way a supermax prison works, from his father's struggle with Alzheimer's disease to a rueful account of Franzen's brief tenure as an Oprah Winfrey author, each piece wrestles with Franzen's familiar themes: the erosion of civic life and private dignity, and the hidden persistence of loneliness, in postmodern imperial America. These collected essays record what Franzen calls 'a movement away from an angry and frightened isolation toward an acceptance - even a celebration - of being a reader and a writer.' They voice a wry distrust of the claims of technology and psychology, the love-hate relationship with consumerism, and the subversive belief in the tragic shape of the individual life that help make Franzen one of the sharpest, toughest-minded, and most entertaining social critics at work today.

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Review:

Jonathan Franzen is smart and brash, the kind of person you want as your social critic but not as a brother-in-law. Many of the 14 essays in How to Be Alone, by the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Corrections, first appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's, and elsewhere. A long, much-discussed rumination on the American novel, (newly) titled "Why Bother?," is included, as well as essays on privacy obsession, the U.S. post office, New York City, big tobacco, and new prisons. At his best, as in "My Father's Brain," a piece on his father's struggle with Alzheimer's, Franzen can make the ordinary world utterly riveting. But at times, it can be difficult to discern where Franzen stands on any particular subject, as he often takes both sides of an argument. Valid attempts to reflect ambiguity s! ometimes lead to obfuscation, especially in his essays on privacy and tobacco, although his belief that small-town America of years gone by offered the individual little privacy certainly rings true. Franzen can write with panache, as in this comment after he watched, without headphones, a TV show during a flight: "(It) became an exposé of the hydraulics of insincere smiles." A few of the shorter pieces appear to be filler. Franzen shines brightest when he gets edgy and a little angry, as in "The Reader in Exile": "Instead of Manassas battlefield, a historical theme park. Instead of organizing narratives, a map of the world as complex as the world itself. Instead of a soul, membership in a crowd. Instead of wisdom, data." --Mark Frutkin, Amazon.ca

About the Author:

Jonathan Franzen is the author of THE TWENTY- SEVENTH, STRONG MOTION and THE CORRECTIONS. His fiction and nonfiction appear frequently in the NEW YORKER and HARPER'S, and he was named one of the best American novelists under forty by GRANTA and the NEW YORKER. He lives in New York City.

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Franzen, Jonathan Author
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ISBN 10: 0007153589 ISBN 13: 9780007153589
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 126 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of The Corrections . Jonathan Franzen s Freedom was the literary sensation of 2010, whilst The Corrections was the best-loved and most written-about novel the previous decade. How to be Alone , is a collection of the personal essays and painstaking, often humorous reportage that have earned Franzen a wide and loyal readership, including what has come to be known as The Harper s Essay , Franzen s controversial 1996 look at the fate of the novel. From the sex-advice industry to the way a supermax prison works, from his father s struggle with Alzheimer s disease to a rueful account of Franzen s brief tenure as an Oprah Winfrey author, each piece wrestles with Franzen s familiar themes: the erosion of civic life and private dignity, and the hidden persistence of loneliness, in postmodern imperial America. These collected essays record what Franzen calls a movement away from an angry and frightened isolation toward an acceptance - even a celebration - of being a reader and a writer. They voice a wry distrust of the claims of technology and psychology, the love-hate relationship with consumerism, and the subversive belief in the tragic shape of the individual life that help make Franzen one of the sharpest, toughest-minded, and most entertaining social critics at work today. Bookseller Inventory # KNV9780007153589

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Franzen, Jonathan Author
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 126 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of The Corrections . Jonathan Franzen s Freedom was the literary sensation of 2010, whilst The Corrections was the best-loved and most written-about novel the previous decade. How to be Alone , is a collection of the personal essays and painstaking, often humorous reportage that have earned Franzen a wide and loyal readership, including what has come to be known as The Harper s Essay , Franzen s controversial 1996 look at the fate of the novel. From the sex-advice industry to the way a supermax prison works, from his father s struggle with Alzheimer s disease to a rueful account of Franzen s brief tenure as an Oprah Winfrey author, each piece wrestles with Franzen s familiar themes: the erosion of civic life and private dignity, and the hidden persistence of loneliness, in postmodern imperial America. These collected essays record what Franzen calls a movement away from an angry and frightened isolation toward an acceptance - even a celebration - of being a reader and a writer. They voice a wry distrust of the claims of technology and psychology, the love-hate relationship with consumerism, and the subversive belief in the tragic shape of the individual life that help make Franzen one of the sharpest, toughest-minded, and most entertaining social critics at work today. Bookseller Inventory # KNV9780007153589

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Book Description 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New edition. 130mm x 197mm x 20mm. Paperback. Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of THE CORRECTIONS. Jonathan Franzen's THE CORRECTIONS was the best-loved and most written-about novel o.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 320 pages. 0.240. Bookseller Inventory # 9780007153589

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Book Description Book Condition: New. Publisher/Verlag: Fourth Estate | Leidenschaftliche, eigenwillige Essays des ebenso sprachtalentierten wie erfolgreichen amerikanischen Autors Jonathan Franzen. Passionate, strong-minded non-fiction from the national book award-winnning author of "The Corrections | Format: Paperback | Language/Sprache: english | 215 gr | 306 pp. Bookseller Inventory # K9780007153589

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Book Description Harper Perennial, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New Book. Shipping: Once your order has been confirmed and payment received, your order will then be processed. The book will be located by our staff, packaged and despatched to you as quickly as possible. From time to time, items get mislaid en route. If your item fails to arrive, please contact us first. We will endeavour to trace the item for you and where necessary, replace or refund the item. Please do not leave negative feedback without contacting us first. All orders will be dispatched within two working days. If you have any quesions please contact us. Bookseller Inventory # V9780007153589

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers HarperPerennial, 2004. paperback. Book Condition: New. *** NEW COPY *** TITLE SHIPPED FROM UK *** Binding paperback Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of 'The Corrections'. Passionate, independent-minded nonfiction from the international bestselling author of 'The Corrections'. Jonathan Franzen's 'Freedom' was. Bookseller Inventory # 0007153589

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Book Description Harper Collins Publ. Uk Apr 2004, 2004. Taschenbuch. Book Condition: Neu. 198x130x22 mm. Neuware - A collection of essays and reportage by the author of the bestselling novel, 'The Corrections', which explore the erosion of civic life and private dignity, and the 'hidden persistence of loneliness in post-modern, imperial America'. 306 pp. Englisch. Bookseller Inventory # 9780007153589

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