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Empire Falls (2001)

von Richard Russo

Weitere Autoren: Siehe Abschnitt Weitere Autoren.

MitgliederRezensionenBeliebtheitDurchschnittliche BewertungDiskussionen
8,333175823 (3.95)419
Milo Roby tries to hold his family together while working at the Empire Grill in the once-successful logging town of Empire Falls, Maine, with his partner, Mrs. Whiting, who is the heir to a faded logging and textile legacy.
Kürzlich hinzugefügt vonjdiggity83, Enffest, wincheryl, matttullis, smithereens4296, private Bibliothek, MistiSegura
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Russo travels his own well-plowed territory here. After enjoying [Nobody's Fool] quite a bit, I decided to try another, but was disappointed to learn that Russo doesn't stray too far from his own tropes. Yes, we have the underbelly of the work-a-day and ne'er-do-wells; check, the rich and cold and manipulative heiress who runs/owns the town; and, yup, the lovable, if stunted hero. But the process of pounding on that dolt again and again and again quickly loses interest. The only critical remark I wrote about essentially the same character in [Nobody's Fool] is that the plot strained credibility as the hits piled up for him and he went back for more. if anything, Miles Roby, the punching bag this time, is less credible and imminently more tiring. By the time the big final blow comes, you can hear it galloping from miles away. Read this one, or one of the others, but don't read another one.

3 bones!!! ( )
  blackdogbooks | Mar 6, 2022 |
After watching the HBO miniseries twice, I decided to read the book. In this case, watching the movie first helped me enjoy the novel even more. The casting in the HBO series was excellent and the dialogue is virtually identical. It's really given the book a lift to have those actors in my head saying those lines while I'm reading. ( )
  tsmom1219 | Feb 24, 2022 |
Some stories, once told, become an indelible part of the landscape. That town has always been there. Those people have always lived there. Such is the case with Empire Falls, a small, dying mill town in Maine. Empire Falls is peopled with a broad cast of characters whose lives all touch each other in some way, but mainly it is the story of Miles Roby, who runs the Empire Grill, and Francine Whiting, who owns most of the town and also Miles, and how that came to be. There is so much going on here, and the story takes its time to unfold its secrets, bringing the reader on a leisurely stroll through the lives of Empire Falls's inhabitants until they become as familiar as our own neighbors. Quite often, this book is laugh-out-loud funny, and in a few places, it's unspeakably horrible. But mostly it's a clear-headed and largely affectionate view of small-town American life and people who are largely doing the best they can with the little they've been given to work with. This book fully absorbed me while I was reading it, and now I'm feeling melancholy that it's all over. ( )
  sturlington | Feb 12, 2022 |
What happens to small town when the only industry shutters its doors? Who are the people that stay behind and why? I'm reminded of the famous Seattle billboards from the seventies, "Will the last person to leave Seattle, please turn out the lights?"

This book won the Pulitzer and it captures what happens in America when small towns lose their livelihood to corporate and individual avarice.
Russo is a master at creating characters and motivations. I was delighted with how well he pulled themes throughout the book.

I'm creating a new bookshelf for books that perfectly capture a time and place in America and adding this book to it. ( )
  auldhouse | Sep 30, 2021 |
(50) This is a novel that has been basically number one on all 'list of recommended books' for me by every algorithm out there. Just seeing it pop all the time made me resist reading it, but finally just grabbed it from one of those free pop-up little libraries on the side of the road, and here we are. A story of an everyman in a small town in Maine just after the the millennium; written contemporaneously (i.e. before ubiquitous cell phones, the 24 hour news cycle, and social media) Miles Roby leaves college in his senior year and returns to Empire Falls to be with his dying mother - 20 years later, he is still flipping burgers at the local grill -- even though her last wish was for him to break free. This is about the ties that bind, the secret disappointments and grudges we all nurse that even subconsciously drive our decisions. Max Roby, the drunk nee'r do well father was clearly the best character and his dialogue was a ironic and bitterly funny thread that held the novel together. I read this greedily and the characters leapt off the page. I respect the Pulitzer though am surprised that a novel with this degree of sentimentality would win the prize. It was a tad melodramatic.

The characterizations and sense of place were fantastic. The dramatic tension was quite good and several scenes were pitch perfect - could you not just feel the tension in the bleachers of that football game? I did not love the ending - in some ways it was quite dragged out and in others unfinished. It would have been nice to know what would become of the town and its eating establishments. The question that is posed at the beginning - 'Hey Miles, is the old lady gonna leave it all to you in her will?" - could have been the closing line as well.

On the whole I really enjoyed it and I will right away find the HBO series. I am late to the party but the formula was right regarding this being a book I would like. Highly recommended for lovers of thick family sagas centering on a strong sense of place - "We were the Mulvaney's" by JCO; "The Brother's K," by James David Duncan, the TV show "Friday Night Lights" come to mind. ( )
  jhowell | Sep 25, 2021 |
Russo's command of his story is unerring, but his manner is so unassuming that his mastery is easy to miss. He satisfies every expectation without lapsing into predictability, and the last section of the book explodes with surprises that also seem, in retrospect, like inevitabilities. As the pace quickens and the disparate threads of the narrative draw tighter, you find yourself torn between the desire to rush ahead and the impulse to slow down.

Empire Falls, situated at a fictitious and unlovely bend of the Knox River, is the kind of place tourists from Boston or New York speed through en route to the mini-Martha's Vineyards of the Maine coast, perhaps stopping for lunch at a place like the Empire Grill and eavesdropping on the taciturn, wisecracking regulars. By the end of this novel, you'll know the town's geography like a native, and its tattered landmarks -- the Empire Grill, the old Whiting shirt factory, the architectural folly C. B. Whiting built across the river -- will be as vivid and as charged with metaphor as Salem's house of seven gables or the mansions of East Egg. You will also have had the good fortune to tour this unremarkable geography in the company of an amiable, witty raconteur who knows all the gossip and the local history as well as some pretty good jokes. Only after you've bought him a beer, shaken his hand and said goodbye will it occur to you that he's also one of the best novelists around.
hinzugefügt von WiJiWiJi | bearbeitenNew York Times, A.O. Scott (Jun 24, 2001)
 
Russo's command of his story is unerring, but his manner is so unassuming that his mastery is easy to miss. He satisfies every expectation without lapsing into predictability, and the last section of the book explodes with surprises that also seem, in retrospect, like inevitabilities. As the pace quickens and the disparate threads of the narrative draw tighter, you find yourself torn between the desire to rush ahead and the impulse to slow down.
hinzugefügt von Nickelini | bearbeitenNew York Times, A.O. Scott (Jun 24, 2001)
 

» Andere Autoren hinzufügen (7 möglich)

AutorennameRolleArt des AutorsWerk?Status
Richard RussoHauptautoralle Ausgabenberechnet
Ven, Sandra van deÜbersetzerCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt

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Compared to the Whiting mansion in town, the house Charles Beaumont Whiting built a decade after his return to Maine was modest.
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Milo Roby tries to hold his family together while working at the Empire Grill in the once-successful logging town of Empire Falls, Maine, with his partner, Mrs. Whiting, who is the heir to a faded logging and textile legacy.

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