Annotations for Lay of the Land


Baker & Taylor
A follow-up to The Sportswriter and Independence Day once again picks up the story of Frank Bascombe in the fall of 2000, with the results of the presidential election still hanging in the balance and Frank confronted by the perils of Thanksgiving, as he contends with health, marital, and family issues and works as a realtor at the Jersey shore. 150,000 first printing.

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Baker & Taylor
In the fall of 2000, with the results of the presidential election still hanging in the balance, Frank Bascombe confronts the perils of Thanksgiving as he contends with health, marital, and family issues and works as a realtor at the Jersey shore.

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Blackwell North Amer
In this novel, 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.

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Random House, Inc.

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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