Leah's Reviews > Freedom

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
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Feb 22, 11

bookshelves: tob
Read in February, 2011

ohhhh, well. i might need to process this book more before i review it, but i'm going to attempt something now.

first of all, keep in mind that i'm a character person. as long as the characters are interesting and the writing is interesting then i'm hooked. i don't really care if there's a plot, which is good, cause this book didn't really have one. but i *really* enjoyed the characters - i found them all, for the most part, fascinating, flawed, nuanced, angsty, confused, depressed, occasionally annoying, occasionally beautiful, and very human. and, in fact, that's pretty much how i felt about the book as a whole! there's a LOT of detail, and usually that makes me feel bogged down but i didn't feel that way here. i liked getting all that detail and learning EVERY. LITTLE. THING. about these peoples' lives. i felt like i was right there experiencing things with them, and that was both enjoyable and also often difficult - reading this book has put me in a pretty down mood the past couple weeks, and though that didn't make me want to stop i'm pretty relieved it's over.

phew, the whole experience was kinda exhausting, but also really meaningful. very much like life. it's not a perfect book, but i read very few that even come close. i dunno, all the hype (both positive and negative) aside, i loved reading this book and will think about it for a long time to come.
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message 9: by Deborah (new) - added it

Deborah Edwards I just put this book on my "to-read" list recently, and your review makes me glad that I did.


message 8: by Sherry (new) - added it

Sherry I like your review, Leah. It's so fresh and honest. It gives me a great feel for the book. He's an author I've read before so I might just have to read this one too.


message 7: by Janet (new) - added it

Janet Lira Me too. that was a honest easy review. God bless you for not getting all wordy and full of your own voice. I am going to read this book, based on your review.


Gary the Bookworm Hi Leah,

I think your review is perfect. I'm glad you decided to jump right it because it seems authentic. What else have you read that you like?


Leah hi gary, thanks so much! that's awfully nice to hear. generally speaking, i'm a big fan of michael chabon, jonathan lethem, aimee bender, haruki murakami...others i've loved recently have included wolf hall, lonely polygamist, skippy dies, and stoner by john williams. i'm happy to discuss books anytime if you ever want to message me. :-)


Brandon Leah - I just finished Freedom and I agree with everything you've said. I am thinking about jumping right into Corrections tomorrow, but I'm not sure my brain can handle it.

You said, "i loved reading this book and will think about it for a long time to come." It's been since 2/2011. Does the book still stay with you?


Leah Hi Brandon, you know, it *has* stayed with me! I'd actually like to read it again, but I don't know if/when that will ever happen. I do think about the characters a lot still, even if some of the details have disappeared. I'd also like to re-read The Corrections, I'm jealous that you get to read it for the first time! Waiting a little bit might be a good idea, though, it's as intense and all-encompassing as Freedom (at least, it was for me). Might need a little breathing room before you climb in....


Brandon Leah, too late. I've already started with The Corrections. I'm going to try and pace myself with it. I mean, I didn't even go to work or check my email while I was reading Freedom. Hopefully that won't happen again!

"I'm jealous that you get to read it for the first time!"

That's what Walter said to Patty when she was reading War and Peace. Clearly, Freedom *has* stayed with you!


Leah Brandon, I guess so! Not sure I really want to be channeling Walter, but I guess I'll have to live with it. :-)

Looking forward to hearing what you think of The Corrections! Keep me posted once you come up for air!


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