Reading Franzen Part V Cont’d


From the outset, one of the things I knew about Denise is that beyond being the only real likable character in the entire story, she’s the only one who doesn’t strike me as a selfish, spoiled brat, like her brothers, and she doesn’t seem to have the obsession of not turning out like her parents, to the point at which it nearly destroys her life, as do both Gary and Chip.

Thus far Denise has made this story almost worth these last three grueling weeks. Almost. Once again though it strikes me as interesting that it took several hundred pages to get interesting after a slump at the end of part IV and the beginning of part V, and though Denise is currently trying to forget about her lover I really wish Robin and Denise would end up together in the end because they’re the only couple, and for that matter, only characters I can actually manage to root for. So here’s hoping.

I really don’t know what to say about how this part ended, beyond the fact that it was wholly unbelievable. Literally. From the father falling off the cruise ship he was on, to, whatever is going on with Chip which… I have no words for. It’s curious to me that with everything Franzen has to say about genre fiction this book sure has taken a bizarre turn that even a genre author might find a bit questionable.

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