Everybody's Fool

Everybody's Fool

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
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An immediate national best seller and instant classic from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls . Richard Russo returns to North Bath--"a town where dishonesty abounds, everyone misapprehends everyone else and half the citizens are half-crazy" ( The New York Times )--and the characters who made Nobody's Fool a beloved choice of book clubs everywhere.  Everybody's Fool is classic Russo, filled with humor, heart, hard times, and people you can't help but love, possibly because their various faults make them so human.
 
Everybody's Fool picks up roughly a decade since we were last with Miss Beryl and Sully on New Year's Eve 1984. The irresistible Sully, who in the intervening years has come by some unexpected good fortune, is staring down a VA cardiologist's estimate that he has only a year or two left, and it's hard work trying to keep this news from the most important people in his life: Ruth, the married woman he carried on with for years . . . the ultra-hapless Rub Squeers, who worries that he and Sully aren't  still  best friends . . . Sully's son and grandson, for whom he was mostly an absentee figure (and now a regretful one). We also enjoy the company of Doug Raymer, the chief of police who's obsessing primarily over the identity of the man his wife might've been about to run off with,  before  dying in a freak accident . . . Bath's mayor, the former academic Gus Moynihan, whose wife problems are, if anything, even more pressing . . . and then there's Carl Roebuck, whose lifelong run of failing upward might now come to ruin. And finally, there's Charice Bond--a light at the end of the tunnel that is Chief Raymer's office--as well as her brother, Jerome, who might well be the train barreling into the station.

A crowning achievement--"like hopping on the last empty barstool surrounded by old friends" ( Entertainment Weekly )--from one of the greatest storytellers of our time.
Publisher: New York :, Alfred A. Knopf,, 2016
Edition: First edition. --
ISBN: 9780307270641
0307270645
Characteristics: 477 pages

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b
books_for_vln
Oct 01, 2017

The writing in this book seemed to me to be a mishmash of John Irving, Joseph Heller and Kurt Vonnegut. There is absurd theater in the lives of several small town residents. The residents themselves are in reality in pretty bad shape - criminals, alcoholics, victims of domestic violence - but the book distracts from this through the portrayal of the individuals in a way that makes you feel compassion for the characters.

s
spantell
Jul 29, 2017

I loved this book. The first half was a bit slow but the second half kept me on the edge of my seat. Interesting characters, well flushed out, and dry humor throughout. Surprised by the critical comments.

d
djmurph54
Jan 24, 2017

While I enjoyed Nobody's Fool, revisiting this world was a tedious read. Russo moved the characters around in predictable ways, relying on old and obvious tricks to evoke humor and meaning that were not earned. If these characters were as tiresome for him as they were for me, perhaps Nobody's Fool was enough.

JCLMELODYK Oct 21, 2016

In the tradition of Peter Dexter and Richard Ford, Russo gives us the middle age man who is a hot mess. Humorous and tender. I heard his first Sully Sullivan novel was even better.

h
honeyhair
Jul 15, 2016

The continuation of life in Bath with Sully and other characters carried over from Nobody's Fool. What a great writer Mr. Russo is, such a pleasure to read. If you have not read Nobody's Fool, make sure you do before venturing to Everybody's Fool.

w
wiltonsugiyama
Jun 10, 2016

I loved Nobody's Fool, and had actually read that in 2015. I was delighted to hear that a sequel was available. I snapped it up right away, while the characters of North Bath still resonated in my brain.
I know, there's a 'but' coming. And here it is: I wanted to love this book. Oh how I did. However, I did not find myself as immersed as I was in the first book. Sully has aged, and have a lot of the players in the first book, of course. Because of this, there is less of a focus on these characters, and more so, on marginal ones of the first, and some new ones. I, sadly, did not find them as engaging this time around. The wryness is still there, and it is a tonic to the book. I wanted to be engaged, but as the book took more tangents with less interesting characters, I found myself wondering why I wasn't more riveted. The fact was, with 'Nobody' Sully was unmistakeably the main, flawed, warts and all, character. This time round, Russo has peopled the book with more diverse swathe of people - I think it made the book less focused and, sadly, less readable. For me, Empire Falls was the high water mark. Classic reader lament: why couldn't it be more like . . . enter title of reader's favorite book by that author!

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