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Empire Falls by Richard Russo
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U 50x66
's review
Feb 08, 2012

really liked it

Any book that comes with a coffee stain already on the cover is all right by me! I mostly enjoyed this novel very much. The main character and indeed all of the characters struck me as very real in that they inhabited their lives so thoroughly that the reasons why they would not change were clear. They navigated the many subtle and not so subtle shifts in their lives as best they could, sometimes happily, sometimes no. I would have given this book five stars, except for the very made-for-TV-movie ending, a great frustration of mine with modern writers. Russo has established a town so real that I imagined myself there, with wonderful connections between the characters, but he inserted a dramatic event toward the end that seemed very artificial and distracted me from what was otherwise a truly wonderful book.

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