Other Free Encyclopedias » Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern Fiction » Books & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Fl-Ha)

Franzen, Jonathan

corrections city family

(US, 1959– )

Franzen's big, ambitious, and extremely funny novel The Corrections (2001) explores the life of the Lamberts; father Alfred, losing his mind to Parkinson's; mother Enid, determined to preserve appearances and have one last happy family Christmas in their mid-western home; daughter Denise, brilliant chef and lover to both her employer and his wife; uxorious, money-loving older son Gary; and underachieving younger son Chip, employed in a surreal trouble-shooting role in Lithuania. Through these lives and their entanglements Franzen presents a picture of the world as well as of a family; brutally honest, closely observed, witty, and deeply moving—especially in the parents' stories—this is one of the best novels of the last ten years. The 27th City (1988), set in St Louis, is a political thriller. It shows the city turned inside out after the installation of a new police chief, a young woman from Bombay. As in The Corrections, the writing hums with energy.

John Updike, Philip Roth  JR

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