Chris's Reviews > The Corrections

The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen
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's review
Feb 01, 2016

really liked it
Read from August 13, 2015 to February 01, 2016

** spoiler alert ** First of all, I am eternally grateful that the Lamberts aren't my family. But the reason why The Corrections is so good, why it resonates with so many people, is that it could be anyone's family.

More than anything, The Corrections is a story of failure. Alfred Lambert, the family's patriarch, failed by being so cold to his wife and children and then couldn't understand why they responded in kind. Enid, Alfred's wife, failed by believing that her children weren't living up to her expectations without realizing that the standard should be their own expectations. Oldest son Gary, who on the surface seems to have the perfect life, failed by letting materialism trump the things that really matter. Youngest daughter Denise failed from the job of a lifetime through willful self-destruction.

Yet it is fitting that middle son Chip, who failed probably more spectacularly than any of them, ends up being the ray of hope when he comes home to help his father through his twilight period.

It was hard getting through this book because every situation the family endured seemed to be darker than the last. But Franzen's gifted writing and realistic portrayals made this book worth reading, even up to its painful conclusion. I look forward to reading more of Franzen's work.

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Reading Progress

08/13 marked as: currently-reading
12/06 marked as: to-read
01/02 marked as: currently-reading
02/01 marked as: read

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