Empire Falls by Richard Russo audiobook

Empire Falls

By Richard Russo
Read by Ron McLarty

Random House Audio
20.44 Hours Unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
  • $27.50
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    ISBN: 9780307967404

Richard Russo—from his first novel, Mohawk, to his most recent, Straight Man—has demonstrated a peerless affinity for the human tragicomedy, and with this stunning new novel he extends even further his claims on the small-town, blue-collar heart of the country. Dexter County, Maine, and specifically the town of Empire Falls, has seen better days, and for decades, in fact, only a succession from bad to worse. One by one, its logging and textile enterprises have gone belly-up, and the once vast holdings of the Whiting clan (presided over by the last scion’s widow) now mostly amount to decrepit real estate. The working classes, meanwhile, continue to eke out whatever meager promise isn’t already boarded up. Miles Roby gazes over this ruined kingdom from the Empire Grill, an opportunity of his youth that has become the albatross of his daily and future life. Called back from college and set to work by family obligations—his mother ailing, his father a loose cannon—Miles never left home again. Even so, his own obligations are manifold: a pending divorce; a troubled younger brother; and, not least, a peculiar partnership in the failing grill with none other than Mrs. Whiting. All of these, though, are offset by his daughter, Tick, whom he guides gently and proudly through the tribulations of adolescence. A decent man encircled by history and dreams, by echoing churches and abandoned mills, by the comforts and feuds provided by lifelong friends and neighbors, Miles is also a patient, knowing guide to the rich, hardscrabble nature of Empire Falls: fathers and sons and daughters, living and dead, rich and poor alike. Shot through with the mysteries of generations and the shattering visitations of the nation at large, it is a social novel of panoramic ambition, yet at the same time achingly personal. In the end, Empire Falls reveals our worst and best instincts, both our most appalling nightmares and our simplest hopes, with all the vision, grace and humanity of truly epic storytelling.

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Summary

Summary

Winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

Winner of the 2002 Ambassador Book Award for Fiction

A 2001 Time Magazine Top 10 Book for Fiction

Winner of Pulitzer Prize (Fiction), 2002

Richard Russo—from his first novel, Mohawk, to his most recent, Straight Man—has demonstrated a peerless affinity for the human tragicomedy, and with this stunning new novel he extends even further his claims on the small-town, blue-collar heart of the country. Dexter County, Maine, and specifically the town of Empire Falls, has seen better days, and for decades, in fact, only a succession from bad to worse. One by one, its logging and textile enterprises have gone belly-up, and the once vast holdings of the Whiting clan (presided over by the last scion’s widow) now mostly amount to decrepit real estate. The working classes, meanwhile, continue to eke out whatever meager promise isn’t already boarded up. Miles Roby gazes over this ruined kingdom from the Empire Grill, an opportunity of his youth that has become the albatross of his daily and future life. Called back from college and set to work by family obligations—his mother ailing, his father a loose cannon—Miles never left home again. Even so, his own obligations are manifold: a pending divorce; a troubled younger brother; and, not least, a peculiar partnership in the failing grill with none other than Mrs. Whiting. All of these, though, are offset by his daughter, Tick, whom he guides gently and proudly through the tribulations of adolescence. A decent man encircled by history and dreams, by echoing churches and abandoned mills, by the comforts and feuds provided by lifelong friends and neighbors, Miles is also a patient, knowing guide to the rich, hardscrabble nature of Empire Falls: fathers and sons and daughters, living and dead, rich and poor alike. Shot through with the mysteries of generations and the shattering visitations of the nation at large, it is a social novel of panoramic ambition, yet at the same time achingly personal. In the end, Empire Falls reveals our worst and best instincts, both our most appalling nightmares and our simplest hopes, with all the vision, grace and humanity of truly epic storytelling.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“A rich, humorous, elegantly constructed novel rooted in the bedrock traditions of American fiction. This is easily Russo’s most seductive book thus far.” New York Times
In a warmhearted novel of sweeping scope.... Russo follows up his rollicking academic satire, Straight Man (1997), with a return to the blue-collar melieu featured in his first three novels and once again shows an unerring sense of the rhythms of small-town life, balancing his irreverent, mocking humor with unending empathy for his characters and their foibles Booklist
“Russo writes with a warm, vibrant humanity…A stirring mix of poignancy, drama, and comedy.” Washington Post
“Not one wrong note…Russo demonstrates a stunning ability for nailing the essentials of character and atmosphere.” Newsday
“Russo’s most assured novel yet…Empire Falls makes you wish you’d stayed in that small town you grew up in.” San Francisco Chronicle
“Immensely satisfying…[Russo is] an unpretentious master of fictional technique whose deeper wisdom expresses itself in the distinctive fallibility, decency, humor, and grace of the indisputably, irresistibly real people he [creates].” Boston Globe
“The history of American literature may show that Richard Russo wrote the last great novel of the twentieth century.” Christian Science Monitor
“Nobody does small-town life better than Richard Russo.” Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“Engaging…Russo’s unique talent is his way of yoking wry humor to serious sadness, and rollicking entertainment to social commentary.” Cleveland Plain Dealer
Empire Falls, an irreverent but touching depiction of a small New England town on the brink of extinction, is competently read by McLarty, who brings out the warmth and depth of the engaging plot through colorful characterizations and an ironic tone.” Booklist (starred audio review)
“In a warmhearted novel of sweeping scope…Russo follows up his rollicking academic satire, Straight Man, with a return to the blue-collar milieu featured in his first three novels and once again shows an unerring sense of the rhythms of small-town life, balancing his irreverent, mocking humor with unending empathy for his characters and their foibles.” Booklist (starred review)

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Richard Russo

Author Bio: Richard Russo

Richard Russo is the New York Times bestselling author of several novels, two short-story collections, and the memoir Elsewhere. In 2002 he received the Pulitzer Prize for Empire Falls which, like Nobody’s Fool, was adapted to film, in a multiple-award-winning HBO miniseries. In 2016 he was given the Indie Champion Award by the American Booksellers Association; and in 2017 he received France’s Grand Prix de Littérature Américaine.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download
Category: Fiction
Runtime: 20.44
Audience: Adult
Language: English