The new novel from the author of The Corrections. Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers of old St. Paul - the gentrifiers, the hands-on parents, the avant-garde of the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbour who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to actually do their job. She was an enviably perfect mother and the wife of Walter's dreams. Together with Walter - environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, family man - she was doing her small part to build a better world. But now, in the new millennium, the Berglunds have become a mystery. Why has their teenage son moved in with the aggressively Republican family next door? Why has Walter taken a job working with Big Coal? What exactly is Richard Katz - outre rocker and Walter's old college friend and rival - still doing in the picture? Most of all, what has happened to poor Patty? Why has the bright star of Barrier Street become "a very different kind of neighbour," an implacable Fury coming unhinged before the street's attentive eyes? In his first novel since The Corrections, Jonathan Franzen has given us an epic of contemporary love and marriage. Freedom comically and tragically captures the temptations and burdens of too much liberty: the thrills of teenage lust, the shaken compromises of middle age, the wages of suburban sprawl, the heavy weight of empire. In charting the mistakes and joys of Freedom's intensely realized characters, as they struggle to learn how to live in an ever more confusing world, Franzen has produced an indelible and deeply moving portrait of our time.
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Amazon Best of the Month, August 2010: "The awful thing about life is this:" says Octave to the Marquis in Renoir's Rules of the Game. "Everyone has his reasons." That could be a motto for novelists as well, few more so than Jonathan Franzen, who seems less concerned with creating merely likeable characters than ones who are fully alive, in all their self-justifying complexity. Freedom is his fourth novel, and, yes, his first in nine years since The Corrections. Happy to say, it's very much a match for that great book, a wrenching, funny, and forgiving portrait of a Midwestern family (from St. Paul this time, rather than the fictional St. Jude). Patty and Walter Berglund find each other early: a pretty jock, focused on the court and a little lost off it, and a stolid budding lawyer, besotted with her and almost burdened by his integrity. They make a family and a life together, and, over time, slowly lose track of each other. Their stories align at times with Big Issues--among them mountaintop removal, war profiteering, and rock'n'roll--and in some ways can't be separated from them, but what you remember most are the characters, whom you grow to love the way families often love each other: not for their charm or goodness, but because they have their reasons, and you know them. --Tom Nissley
Jonathan Franzen is the author of three novels, The Twenty-Seventh City (1988), Strong Motion (1992), and The Corrections (2001); a collection of nonfiction, How to Be Alone (2002); and The Discomfort Zone (2006), a memoir.
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Book Description Fourth Estate (GB), 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0007269757
Book Description Fourth Estate (GB), 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 7269757
Book Description Fourth Estate, London, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: new. UK edition. Third printing. Dustjacket design very different from American edition. Ships from USA. Bookseller Inventory # 3009
Book Description Fourth Estate (GB). Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0007269757 First edition, First Print. Signed by the author on the limitation page of 2000 copies. NOT inscribed, clipped or otherwise marked. Dust jacket in protective cover and shipped in a box. Complete # line 10987654321. New. Bookseller Inventory # SKU1002798
Book Description Fourth Estate, London, 2010. Hard Cover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Edition. A fine unread 1st impression in a fine dustwrapper. Signed by the Author on the title page. Signed at the Cheltenham Literature Festival 2015. The withdrawn 1st printing. Signed by Author. Bookseller Inventory # 007134
Book Description Fourth Estate, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. A mint first printing in a likewise unclipped dust wrapper. This immaculate unread gift condition copy is SIGNED by the author to the title page, NOT to a tipped in page. This copy escaped the withdrawing of all copies due to incorrect text.The Event Flyer for UEA is loose laid in. An outstanding copy. BOXED DESPATCH. Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory # ABE-1485097823608
Book Description 4th Estate, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. First printing of the first edition with a solitary number 1 on the copyright page. Only a handful of events have been arranged in the UK to promote the book and at most of these events, only the reprinted edition was made available, so signed firsts are very scarce indeed. This first edition has been signed to the title page by Jonathan Franzen. A more desirable collectable than the tip-in page version. A fine hardcover in a fine dustwrapper.**********PACKED IN A BOX WITH PLENTY OF PROTECTION. Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory # ABE-3524323354