With The Sportswriter, in 1986, Richard Ford commenced a cycle of novels that ten years later—after Independence Day won both the Pulitzer Prize and the PEN/Faulkner Award—was hailed by The Times of London as “an extraordinary epic [that] is nothing less than the story of the twentieth century itself.” Now, a decade later, Frank Bascombe returns, with a new lease on life (and real estate), more acutely in thrall to life’s endless complexities than ever before.
His story resumes in the autumn of 2000, when his trade as a realtor on the Jersey Shore is thriving, permitting him to revel in the acceptance of “that long, stretching-out time when my dreams would have mystery like any ordinary person’s; when whatever I do or say, who I marry, how my kids turn out, becomes what the world—if it makes note at all—knows of me, how I’m seen, understood, even how I think of myself before whatever there is that’s wild and unassuagable rises and cheerlessly hauls me off to oblivion.” But as a Presidential election hangs in the balance, and a postnuclear-family Thanksgiving looms before him along with crises both marital and medical, Frank discovers that what he terms the Permanent Period is fraught with unforeseen perils: “All the ways that life feels like life at age fifty-five were strewn around me like poppies.”
A holiday, and a novel, no reader will ever forget—at once hilarious, harrowing, surprising, and profound. The Lay of the Land is astonishing in its own right and a magnificent expansion of one of the most celebrated chronicles of our time.
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After more than a decade, Richard Ford revives Frank Bascombe, the beloved protagonist from The Sportswriter and Independence Day. Fans will be scrambling for The Lay of the Land, a novel that finds Bascombe contending with health, marital, and familial issues wake of the 2000 presidential election. We asked Richard Ford to tell us a little more about what it's like to create (and share so much time with) a character like Frank. Read his short essay below. --Daphne Durham
Richard Ford on Frank Bascombe
About the Author:
The author of five earlier novels and three collections of stories, Richard Ford was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and the PEN/Faulkner Award for Independence Day, the first book to win both prizes. In 2001 he received the PEN/Malamud Award for excellence in short fiction.
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Book Description Knopf, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. New item. May have light shelf wear. Bookseller Inventory # BK0108941
Book Description Hardcover Oct 24, 2006. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # MY-A9YY-FPFM
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97806794546871.0
Book Description U.S.A.: Knopf, 2006. Soft cover. Book Condition: New. No Jacket. 1st Edition. Advance Reader's Edition precedes publication. Unmarked, very bright, extremely tight, unread, crisp copy in excellent condition. No dust jacket as issued. Carefully bubble-wrapped and ships in sturdy box. Bookseller Inventory # 2686
Book Description Knopf, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0679454683
Book Description Knopf, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0679454683
Book Description Knopf, NY, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. 12mo - over 6¾ - 7¾" tall. This is a New and Unread copy of the first edition (1st printing). Bookseller Inventory # 036172
Book Description Knopf, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110679454683
Book Description Knopf, 2006. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition... New York: Alfred A. Knopf . First edition. First printing. Hardbound. NEW/NEW. Signed by author on title page. A mint unread copy, opened only for signing. The final volume of Ford's Sprotswriter trilogy, an American classic. Chosen as one of the Top Five Fiction Books of 2006, by the New York Times Book Review; one of the top ten books of the year by TIME Magazine. With mylar dust jacket protector. Defect-free, smoke-free. Shipped in sturdy box. You cannot find a better copy. Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory # tc1006-5
Book Description Ecco/Harper Collins, New York, 2012. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Edition. A pristine NEW book.¿A magnificent work of Montana gothic that confirms his position as one of the finest stylists and most humane storytellers in America¿Ford has left the suburbs of New Jersey two thousand miles away and delivered his most elegiac and profound book.¿ (Washington Post ). Bookseller Inventory # 003145