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» One Touch Football - Archive » Books » The Corrections (Page 2)

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Author Topic: The Corrections
steveeeeeeeee
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I'll be honest, I quite liked the first 20 pages and couldn't understand all the fuss, but I see what you mean.

The one section I didn't like was with Denise and Gary during the presentation for potential Correcktall investors. It tried too hard and I found myself skimming the presentation dialogue. On many occasions Franzen seemed desperate to display his depth of knowledge in a wide range of fields. There are detailed sections regarding finance, science, medicine, globalisation, food, cinema and music. I've given the book to my mum to read and I can't help but think what the relevance is of Brian going to dinner with Steve Malkamus will be too her?

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Sir Moses Hill
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Keith, that had also occured to me. But Franzen was an accomplished author before The Corrections and so perhaps didn't have to work as hard as Chip to impress the publishers.
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Spence Broughton
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I'm worried. My grandad has Alzheimer's, and this summer he's going with my granny on a cruise on the Norwegian fjords. Hopefully life won't imitate art.
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imp
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Brilliant story-telling, good writing, although a little over-stylised and trying too hard at times, but you can forgive a few blips in a book that keeps you rolling through 500+ pages. I've heard people moan that the main chracters aren't very "sympathetic". God, all this having to empathise with the main characters crap gets right on my nipples. The characters are real - they do and say stupid things, funny things, immoral things, brilliant things, and on some pages you like them more than others. They're full of internal battles and inconsistencies, just like the rest of us. And there were so many points of identification that I already lost count about 50 pages in.

I was particularly impressed by the detail, though on the other hand he maybe took on more Big Themes than you need to in one novel. The whole Lithuania sub-plot was a bit thrown in. And it wasn't laugh-out-loud funny, or even very funny at all, but witty and clever in places.

Finally, did I read somewhere that the Famous British Author is supposed to be Martin Amis?

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garcia en dolor
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i haven't read it anywhere, but "cricket and darts-related wit" sounds like amis all right.
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The Quiet Man
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Except for "wit".
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garcia en dolor
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it's sarcastic in context
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Wastedinplay
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It's a great, amusing book, with neat Narnia imagery (keeps the 7 year old in me happy) and I LOVED Chip. That and Carter Beats the Devil by Glenn David Gould are the two best things I've read this year.
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Dr. Hofzinser
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This is another book that I read on holiday, and I thought it was absolutely brilliant; a really spell-binding read - easily one of the top 5 novels I've ever read.

As Sir M says, each character's story is so captivating that you don't want it to end, and then the next character's story kicks in and you don't want it to end, and so on. When I reached the last of the book's 650+ pages, I was gutted - I'd become so immersed in the story of the Lamberts that I was desparately disappointed to part company with them, as it were. The account of Alfred's decline is among the most moving things I've ever come across.

The only slight criticism I have is that all the Lithuania stuff seemed a little far-fetched to me. That's splitting hairs, though.

A great, great novel.

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Scouseroo
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Well, there's a coincidence...just finished this last night.

Not my usual kinda stuff (the other two I got from the library were the new Ed McBain and an Ian Rankin 'Rebus' novel which is more me) and the Oprahs Book Club logo on the front was doing its best to put me off....but heard some good stuff about it and thought I'd give it a go.

But, yeah, excellent book. As Sir Moses says - plenty going on - with all 5 of the main characters stories involving. In particular Alfreds decline and Enids inability to cope with it (or avoidance of it)

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garcia en dolor
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i heard recently that he never bothered going to lithuania. that entire episode is off the top of his head.
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Pants
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Yeah, The Corrections is a great novel. I agree, the Lithuania stuff is probably the weakest, but on the whole the book is outstanding. Just going on this, I'd say he has the potential and talent to be as good as Philip Roth, which is a pretty big call.

By the way, has anyone read Franzen's Strong Motion? It's meant to be almost as good as The Corrections.

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garcia en dolor
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yeah. it's not as good. very bitter in tone.
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Pants
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Re. Strong Motion - take it off my list of books to read completely (it's third in the queue) Mad Vlad? Or maybe push it back a bit (behind some Dickens novels that I've been meaning to get round to for ages)?

Mind you, saying it's a bit 'bitter', you've kind of aroused my curiosity.

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garcia en dolor
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if you read his collection of essays, how to be alone, he explains how incredibly depressed he was when he was writing strong motion. i don't know whether reading that essay primed me to pick up on evidence of depressive cynicism when i read the book, but it does come across. compared to the corrections the characters are shallow and venal, more instruments for confirming his dark outlook than realistic human beings, and there's a palpable hatred of money and people who are materially successful.

it's still definitely worth reading though.

Posts: 13290 | From: murphyia | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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