Alyson Hagy's Reviews > Desperate Characters

Desperate Characters by Paula Fox
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's review
Dec 28, 2011

really liked it

This one almost earns 5 stars from me, and it may well deserve that. It's the most biting, bitter, incisive novel I've read since REVOLUTIONARY ROAD, and I've joked to family members that Fox's novel is like Yates's...without the funny bits. DESPERATE CHARACTERS is unflinching in its observations of men, women, America of the 1970s (or, truly, at any time). Fox doesn't pull a single punch, and I was mesmerized by her deep understanding of human character. A great novel, though not one I'd recommend to those who like their fiction "light" or "reaffirming."

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