The Corrections is a grandly entertaining novel for the new century--a comic, tragic masterpiece about a family breaking down in an age of easy fixes. After almost fifty years as a wife and mother, Enid Lambert is ready to have some fun. Unfortunately, her husband, Alfred, is losing his sanity to Parkinson's disease, and their children have long since flown the family nest to the catastrophes of their own lives. The oldest, Gary, a once-stable portfolio manager and family man, is trying to convince his wife and himself, despite clear signs to the contrary, that he is not clinically depressed. The middle child, Chip, has lost his seemingly secure academic job and is failing specatcularly at his new line of work. And Denise, the youngest, has escaped a disastrous marriage only to pour her youth and beauty down the drain on an affair with a married man--or so her mother fears. Desperate for some pleasure to look forward to. Enid has set her heart on an elusive goal: bringing her family together for one last Christmas at home.
Stretching from the Midwest at midcentury to the Wall Street and Eastern Europe of today, The Corrections brings an old-fashioned world of civic virtue and sexual inhibitions into violent collision with the era of home surveillance, hands-off parenting, do-it-yourself mental health care, and globalized greed. Richly realistic, darkly hilarious, deeply humane, it confirms Jonathan Franzen as one of our most brilliant interpreters of American society and the American soul.
Winner of the National Book Award for Fiction
Nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award
An American Library Association Notable Book
'A book which is funny, moving, generous, brutal and intelligent, and which poses the ultimate question: what life is for? And that is as much as anyone could ask.' Blake Morrison, Guardian 'For anyone who has ever found themselves guiltily yearning for an Anne Tyler while in the middle of an Updike or Wolfe. The Lamberts are utterly believable, and once they have all told their stories you can't help but sympathise with them. Be prepared to be moved.' Laurence Phelan, Independent on Sunday 'Compelling. A pleasure from beginning to end. Franzen, in one leap, has put himself into the league of Updike and Roth.' David Sexton, Evening Standard 'A novel of outstanding sympathy, wit, moral intelligence and pathos, a family saga told with stylistic brio and psychological and political insight. No British novelist is currently writing at this pitch.' Jeremy Treglowen, Financial Times 'Impossible to dislike, an unpretentious page-turner.' Zadie Smith, Guardian Book of the Year '"The Corrections" is a wonderful book. Every page simmers with wit, close observation and intelligence. Franzen has delivered as wounding and thoughtful an indictment of contemporary existence as it is possible to make.' John Burnside, Scotsman 'As good as anything I've ever read.' Rachel Cusk, Daily Telegraph Books of the Year
Jonathan Franzen is the author of 'The Twenty-Seventh City', 'Strong Motion', 'How to be Alone' and 'The Discomfort Zone'. His fiction and non-fiction appear frequently in the New Yorker and Harper's, and he was named one of the best American novelists under forty by Granta and the New Yorker. He lives in New York City.