Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
This book was recommended by someone I generally have good reading karma with, so I was eager to read, but sadly I realize this wasn't the book for me. You see this is a real story. And by real, I mean, Jonathan Franzen does an excellent job of creating "real" characters. This is the story of a seemingly perfect family who over time becomes a bit unhinged... basically a family we probably all know or can relate too (sort of).
The problem for me is that I don't like "real" contemporary novels. I don't like "real". I deal with real life all the time, all I have to do is look around me and see broken people and marriages in disarray. You see I like fantasy or stories with a bit more "cooky" characters and these people in this book are regular people with regular people problems (i.e. boring). You see, I prefer to escape reality in my novel selection.
With that said, this book is probably perfect for people who like real life drama (apparently many people loved it, it was even an Oprah book club choice) but for me, I just found it a bit dull and was not enamored by Mr. Franzen's writing. Actually, I didn't like his writing, he wrote in, at times, oddly structured sentences that didn't always flow for me and he likes (seriously) to write very long sentence. Not to mention he likes to go on tangents, I'm talking 10 pages of dialog about a particular cerulean warbler bird and the structure of a non-profit corporation, that I felt we could most certainly do without.
Of course, I might be overly critical because like I explained, I don't like contemporary "real" life novels. I think I'll stick with my science fiction, fantasy and regency romance...
PS. This book was loooong.