Summer ReadingPosted: July 9, 2011
Jonathan Franzen looks suspiciously like Steven King. This is significant because he is only the second living author to ever grace the cover of Time, courtesy of his ‘first great novel of the 21st century’, The Corrections. The first was Stephen King.
I’m not disposed to like someone like Jonathan Franzen. He’s white, male, a Swarthmore graduate and he majored in German. German! He also publicly dissed Oprah in what became one of many great Oprah sagas. He accused Oprah of being schmaltzy. He feared that having that white and yellow circle plastered on the cover of his book would prevent men from reading it. That people would literally judge his book by its cover. And so Oprah decided she didn’t like The Corrections that much after all.
Silly man, that Jonathan Franzen.
The Corrections is quite good, however. And by quite good I mean great. Riveting. It’s been a while since I’ve engaged so fully in a novel like that. He has a wonderful way with characters. Three dimensional, complex and fully realized, they are what make The Corrections so fantastic. First good book of the summer.