Tuesday, July 04, 2006

"Independence Day"

Richard Ford's excellent Independence Day (1996) won the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction as well as the Pulitzer Prize in fiction, the first novel to ever nab both awards.

From the introduction to a Salon interview with Ford:
The novel is the sequel to Ford's highly acclaimed The Sportswriter, which was the story of a man named Frank Bascombe who, devastated by the death of his young son, dropped quietly out of his own life. In Independence Day, Frank Bascombe more or less returns, moving into his ex-wife's old house, settling permanently--after a fling in France with a woman some 20 years his junior--into the suburbs to reconnect with his family and to sell real estate, which becomes for Bascombe a heady metaphor for the nature of attachment. He has moved into what he calls his "Existence Period," a tenuous equilibrium that seems to depend on keeping people and his own feelings at a comfortable remove.
Michiko Kakutani reviewed the book for the New York Times; her bottom line--"With Independence Day, Mr. Ford has written a worthy sequel to The Sportswriter and galvanized his reputation as one of his generation's most eloquent voices." Click here to read the complete review.

Click here to read an excerpt from Independence Day.

--Marshal Zeringue