Freedom: A Novel (Oprah's Book Club)
by Jonathan Franzen
Paperback- $7.60

#1 National Bestseller

Winner of the John Gardner Fiction Award

A National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist

A Los Angeles Times Book Prize ...

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Member ratings

  "Freedom" by jyochim (see profile) 10/02/10

It was really slow in the beginning then got confusing with so many characters in the extremely long story on top of that random swearing.

  "Next One Will Be Better!" by alindsey (see profile) 10/02/10

I enjoyed the book, but it was confusing at times and it wasn't a great pick for book club.

  "Freedom" by GreenArr0w (see profile) 11/01/10

It's difficult to keep reading when you simply don't like the characters! There were moments when I became interested in the ecological aspects of the story, but the people are way too shallow!

  "Freedom" by janvbarnes (see profile) 11/03/10

There are a lot of life lessons in this story, and a lot of material for a good discussion, but the book is too long and often slow to make it fantastic. Still, it is a good book for the committed reader.

  "Slow to start but worth it." by margitolsen (see profile) 11/05/10

A bit long and tedious for awhile but it improves greatly. Characters are very real and complex. Well written and satisfying at the end.

  "Dynamic, Real and Thoughtful" by mstuhan (see profile) 11/08/10

I think this book is sure to become a classic piece of literary "Americana". The characters are all tragically flawed -- even to the point of characiture at times -- but richly developed, noble in thier own way and even forgivable. That is much of what I took away from the novel acutally, how flawed we all are (no one is safe from Franzen's critical eye -- neither liberal nor conservative). Yet, also, how we are all human, and even graceful, in our idiosyncrasies and faults, or maybe because of them. To me, this is the feat worth mentioning and it is done alongside the great telling of current, relevant and person parallel stories, woven togehter to read as one. Well done, Mr. Franzen.

  "Disappointing" by nell6185 (see profile) 11/15/10

I was pretty disappointed in this book. When you read a story, it's usually a glimpse into someone's life when a big event is happening (example: in James Patterson's Alex Cross books, it's some case he's working on), but I feel like this just let us look at a family's life where nothing was super interesting. I thought it was kind of boring and I think Patty is ridiculous (not in a good way). I liked a little bit of it when I was in the 300s page-range but seriously, how many people will actually read that far into it if they don't like it? I'm just a person who doesn't like to leave a book unfinished.

Our group chose this book because some members watch Oprah and saw this had been on her bookclub list. If this is representative of some of the books on her list, it won't be the first source I go to to find a book (though in all fairness I will admit that there have also been some great books on her list as well).

But hey, obviously a lot of other people enjoyed this book so to each her and his own.

  "See whether your book club thinks this is a literary masterpiece" by lreisenbichler (see profile) 11/17/10

It's long. The characters aren't easy to love. But Franzen is deeply insightful about personality quirks that you may find embarrassingly true. I thought it was a very comprehensive snapshot of a certain lifestyle, a certain contemporary sensibility that was worth the read. It's been called a literary masterpiece. If your book club is full of serious readers, it's a good pick. But it's not a light, easy beach read, so may not be for everyone.

  "Freedom" by cutchinp (see profile) 11/17/10

  "Waste of Time" by jmhidding (see profile) 12/08/10

I struggled to finish this book. It never grabbed me and whenever I put it down, I had a hard time wanting to continue the story. I felt very little connection to any of the characters and didn't really care about their lives.

  "Freedom" by cahplus (see profile) 12/10/10

This has got to be one of the most tedious books I have ever read. You know it's not a good thing when you don't care about the characters by page 30. I just kept thinking the book would get better. While the last 20 pages or so held my interest, it was not worth the several hours I invested in reading this. I'd say skip this one and go to the next book on your list!!

  "Freedom" by mkrupiak (see profile) 12/30/10

i had high expectations for this book and was so disappointed. It was so drawn out, confusing at times, and there were too many characters who were intensely developed. It was a terrible, boring read, and when I was finished I felt like I had just wasted a week of reading time.

  "BORING" by kellysmom (see profile) 01/02/11

I really wanted to like this book but it was painful. The characters are not likeable or interesting. I found the entire book pointless, it did not touch my soul nor did it ignite fury or feeling.

  "Not your usual book group book..." by anniemac (see profile) 01/31/11

  "Freedom" by aflrichman (see profile) 02/04/11

It was long, boring, wordy and uninteresting. No one liked it and 3 of us couldn't get past page 300...

  "Freedom" by pjwolfe (see profile) 02/09/11

Don't bother reading FREEDOM, or you will spend most of your time at book club discussing why you could hardly stand to keep reading or didn't keep reading.

  "Not what I was expecting" by yherrera (see profile) 02/09/11

I thought the book was too long to say nothing. Patty is weak, Walter is a wuss and I didn’t think any of the characters had any redeeming qualities. The book was a disappointment and a waste of my time I couldn’t wait for it to be over. I would not recomend this book to a friend but I will say in discussing this book with others I have found other women felt like me but the men who have read this book really like it. Go figure?

  "I'll miss them...." by SharonMcC (see profile) 03/27/11

Guess I'm the odd one out here, but I thought this book was brilliant.

  "FREEDOM" by emptynester (see profile) 04/14/11

Everybody liked it, they didn't like the characters, they were not normal. Some of the story was a bit too long, But was a good book.

  "well written, but whiny" by gymbackmom (see profile) 04/19/11

  "Freedom" by VanessaP (see profile) 02/22/12

I feel bad my friend was lead to believe this was a good book. I had such a difficult time with it. Not impressed by graphic details. I want my money back. Good thing our book club had a nice time regardless of book.

  "Not Your Typical Novel" by cuddlebear1205 (see profile) 03/08/12

"Freedom" is set in the midst of the 2nd term of George W. Bush. It revolves around one family's plights. I was mesmorized as I watched a seemingly perfect, all-American family crumble like stale bread. Mr. Franzen's writing has a way of creating heroes and villains of every character. All of my voyeuristic tendancies were satisfied and I almost didn't want the story to end. "Freedom" is as American as a novel can get. A guilty pleasure for sure.

  "Long Term View of Richly Developed Characters" by lindsey.smallwood (see profile) 03/23/12

At once optimistic and heart-breaking, this book has it all. Comedy, tragedy and the complexities of long term relationships. I really enjoyed it!

  "Way to long and boring" by PuttingGreen (see profile) 06/04/12

Too many characters and too much detail! Only 3 of our members even finished it. Would not recommend!

  "Freedom" by [email protected] (see profile) 09/29/15

Lots to discuss in a book club. Themes of freedom (duh?), guilt, etc. are explored throughout the novel with each of the characters.

  "" by [email protected] (see profile) 09/21/17

  "" by [email protected] (see profile) 03/15/18

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