Annotations for Freedom


Baker & Taylor
The idyllic lives of civic-minded environmentalists Patty and Walter Berglund come into question when their son moves in with aggressive Republican neighbors, green lawyer Walter takes a job in the coal industry, and go-getter Patty becomes increasingly unstable and enraged.

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Baker & Taylor
The idyllic lives of civic-minded environmentalists Patty and Walter Berglund come into question when their son moves in with aggressive Republican neighbors, green lawyer Walter takes a job with Big Coal and go-getter Patty becomes increasingly unstable and enraged. 400,000 first printing.

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Blackwell Publishing
"Franzen's most autobiographical novel, his most engrossing (do not be surprised to find yourself trying to read it all in one sitting), and, stylistically, his most lyrical. In its gorgeous, sweeping scope and the sympathy of its tone, it owes more to Tolstoy than Pynchon, but ultimately the novel offers up pleasures that are utterly Franzenian: a sense of exhilaration permeates The Corrections, which is, in part, the exhilaration of a writer who has broken free of his masters."---Joanna Smith Rakoff, Poets & Writers

"Looms as a model for what ambitious storytelling can still say about modern life."---David Kipen, San Francisco Chronicle

"Dazzling...Electric...Tere's something thrilling, heartening, and inspiring about seeing life revealed so accurately, so transparently-and finally, so forgivingly."---Francine Prose, O, The Oprah Magazine

"Let's not mince words or pussyfoot with fancy lit-crit lingo. This is a great book. It needs to be read...A huge, ambitious, powerful, funny, imaginative yet realistic novel. This book is a gift."---Karen Heller, The Philadelphia Inquirer

"Remarkable and possibly unpecedented: a merciless satirical look at contemporary life that's also fundamentally generous and human."---Laura Miller, Salon

"A book which is funny, moving, generous, brutal and intelligent, and which poses the ultimate question, what life is for-and that is as much as anyone could ask."---Blake Morrison, The Guardian

"A book as strong as The Corrections seems ruled only by its own self-generated aesthetic: it creates the illusion of giving a complete account of a world, and while we're under its enchantment it temporarily eclipses whatever else we may have read. But I guess that is everthing we want in a novel-exccept, when it's rocking along, for it never to be over."---David Gates, The New York Times Book Review

Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers old St. Pauul---the gentrifliers, the hands-on parents, the avant-garde of the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbor, who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to actually do their job. She was an envialbly perfect mother and the wife of Walter's dreams. Together with Walter---environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, total 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 exacly is Richard Katz---outre rocker and Walter's college best friend and rival---still doing in the picture? Most of all, what has happened to Patty? Why has the bright star of barrier Street become "a very different kind of neighbor," an implacable Fury coming unhinged before the street's attentive eyess?
In his first novel since The Corrections, Jonathan Franzen has given us an epic of centemporary love and marriage. Freedom comically and tragically captures the temptations and burdens of 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 characters as they struggle to learn how to live in an ever more confusing world, Franzen has produced an indelible and deply moving portrait of our time.

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McMillan Palgrave

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 neighbor, 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, total 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--outré rocker and Walter's college best friend and rival--still doing in the picture? Most of all, what has happened to Patty? Why has the bright star of Barrier Street become "a very different kind of neighbor," 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 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 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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