Customer Reviews for

Empire Falls

Average Rating 4
( 149 )
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5 Star

(75)

4 Star

(43)

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(16)

2 Star

(12)

1 Star

(3)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Russo does it again

This is a wondrous book. It has a sweeping scope but is artful, well-crafted and highly entertaining. Russo shows a deep understanding of all human instincts and relationships in this novel about a small town in Maine and its inhabitants. The characters are well-roun...
This is a wondrous book. It has a sweeping scope but is artful, well-crafted and highly entertaining. Russo shows a deep understanding of all human instincts and relationships in this novel about a small town in Maine and its inhabitants. The characters are well-rounded, their foibles treated as compassionately as their virtues. As Miles Roby repeatedly puts his dreams on hold, his teen-aged daughter takes on supreme importance for him. Miles' epiphany and the denoument are completely satisfying.

posted by Anonymous on June 7, 2001

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

Disappointed. Not interesting, not compelling, not novel -- I a

Disappointed. Not interesting, not compelling, not novel -- I agree that the characters are well-written, but I could neither identify with nor have empathy for the majority of them.

posted by eagle3tx on November 3, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2010

    captures you from the beginning

    When my mom recommended this book, I was a little skeptical- her taste and mine don't necessarily mesh. From around the third page, I could see why she enjoyed this book. Great subtle humor from the main character's perspective! You can envision living in Empire Falls, because it is not so different from many small towns in America. As a mom, I was interested in the relationship between Tick and her mother, as well as her and her father's relationship. Overall, a wonderful read for just about anyone. Even my sister wants to read it now after how I said what a good book it is, and she doesn't even like to read! This would be a great book for book club discussion as well.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2001

    Russo does it again

    This is a wondrous book. It has a sweeping scope but is artful, well-crafted and highly entertaining. Russo shows a deep understanding of all human instincts and relationships in this novel about a small town in Maine and its inhabitants. The characters are well-rounded, their foibles treated as compassionately as their virtues. As Miles Roby repeatedly puts his dreams on hold, his teen-aged daughter takes on supreme importance for him. Miles' epiphany and the denoument are completely satisfying.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2011

    My favorite book of all time

    I finished reading this book about five years ago...and I still miss the characters to this day. You instantly love them and are pulling for them to succeed from the first time you meet them.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2006

    Awsesome

    This is one of the best books I have read. The chararcters are well developed not only in their strengths but also their imperfections and shortcomings. The plot and sub plots come together nicely and meaningfully in the end

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2005

    One of the BEST books I've ever read

    Richard Russo's 'Empire Falls' is so simple, so sweet and so movingly beautiful that even the grayness of the town the story is set in seems a bit brighter. I got a chance to shake Russo's hand when he visited Milwaukee a few years ago. I had to thank him for writing what is quite possibly the first great book of the 21st century. Once you start reading, you'll never stop. The characters in this book are so vivid, you'd think you know them personally. I just reread this book about a month ago and, like the first time, it killed me to close upon the final page. Kudos to Russo!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2004

    The Unofficial Landfill for Years and Years

    This is one of the best books I have read. Incredible story that is wonderfully written. The characters are real, gritty and true. The 'Amazing Catch' from Miles, gotta love it. It reminds me of 'Winter of Our Discontent' by Steinbeck. But to me the charaters in Empire Falls are more developed and seperated rather than seeming like one big personal allegory. Falls is the story about Miles, the good (and unsexy) man that has had some bad breaks. Give it a read. It is very good.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2004

    My Favorite Book of the Summer

    I've read a lot of books this summer and this one is the best. There are quite a few characters to get to know and by the end of the story you genuinely know them. I was surprised to catch myself laughing out loud. I also liked that the Myles wasn't all about getting the ladies in bed. He was real. The main character was real. Everyone should read this book!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2004

    Work Of Art

    My husband and I both love to read, but we don't always read the same thing. One day, out of desperation with nothing to read, I picked up this book, not realizing that I struck on a gold mine. I have all Richard's books, I have read, Nobody's Fool, and am now Reading Straight Man. Richard Russo is a gifted writer and I enjoy his books very very much!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2003

    Empire Falls

    This book has all the makings of a great novel. After you read it, you will understand why it won the pulitzer prize. The characters have a depth that is exceptional. You won't be disappointed with the time you spend reading this one!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 27, 2014

    Outstanding! Deserved Pulitzer Prize!

    Great novel of small town in Maine dominated by a wealthy, powerful, ruthless woman bent on revenge against the manager of a diner she owns. The characters are well drawn which gives a good understanding of the forces influencing their lives. These characters are a wide variety of ages and circumstances who come together to create a compelling story that ranges all over the emotional map. Very human story in which each character will evoke a reaction from the reader. Hard to put down. Look forward to reading other books by Russo.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 3, 2013

    I loved this book

    The town, the characters and the feelings therein are all easy to identify with. This book is highly readable and leaves you thinking about the characters far after you are finished with it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2012

    Fantastic.

    Fantastic.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2005

    Outstanding!

    What a wonderful novel from Russo. His past works have been good, I especially liked Nobody's Fool, but Empire Falls is at another level. Russo literally photographs what you love to hate about your little hometown. A truly inspiring read. I recently watched the HBO miniseries, and am I the only one angry about the shoddy casting?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2004

    Loved every word of it...

    Russo does an amazing job of capturing small town life in Maine. Having grown up in rural Maine, I found myself laughing right out loud at times to references that I am not sure 'out-of-staters' would realize as true Maine humor. I loved the line about the 'Massholes', after hearing the very phrase come out of my own father's mouth every summer. The people in this book are well developed and very human. The book was a great read straight through, but really picked up for me in the last half when everything started to come together. The last 100 pages I read in one sitting because I couldn't put the book down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 8, 2004

    High School Junior

    I had to read this novel for my AP English calss and although the prologue is kind of slow, I think Russo did an amazing job creating a riveting story that essentially not only analyzes the American identity, but human necessities of love, faith, shelter, and happiness as well.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2003

    Empire Falls

    This book is a fun read. The characters are very detailed and stay true to form throughout the story. This book is worth the effort! I hope you love it as much as I did!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2003

    TERRIFIC UP UNTIL THE ENDING

    WITHIN THE FIRST 20 PAGES YOU ARE WRAPPED UP INTO THE LIVES OF THE COMMON, BUT NOT SIMPLE BY ANY MEANS, PEOPLE WHO INHABIT EMPIRE FALLS, MAINE. THE DEPTH RUSSO DESCRIBES THE CHARACTERS MAKES YOU FEEL THAT YOU ARE A PART OF THE STORY. THE ENDING SEEMED A BIT RUSHED AND ABRUPT

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2003

    American small town story

    I haven't heard about the author before I saw the book at the bookstore. Having seen it won the Pulitzer Prize, I wanted to give it a try. I also didn't read anything like an american small town story before. It sounded interesting. I just finished reading the book. Russo did a terrific job in analyzing the characters in the story. I don't know much about the small towns in the US. I am not even an American. Empire Falls really makes you think about your life. Everyone has good memories and even dreams like Miles Roby in Empire Falls. But no one is sure if it's these dreams that make us feel like we do today. It might as well be these very same dreams holding us back. Maybe it's a combination of dreams and our environment. Empire Falls displays a warm picture of living in a small town and especially how people live their lives with all the happiness, entertainment but also the boundaries. Fantastic read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2003

    left me breathless

    Richard Russo creates a highly realistic fictional world that anyone who has lived in a small town can relate to. The story and characters are so tightly knit and carefully animated that one cannot help but to become immersed in Miles Roby's life and the lives of everyone in Empire Falls. What I like best about this novel is the way in which Miles 'comes of age' himself. Nothing pretentious, cliche, or ordinary about how, at 42, Miles finally overcomes the one mountain that has been holding him back. What a great study of human character...Russo's observations of human behavior are precise and well-developped.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2003

    Rick Rocks!

    Maybe I'm a bit biased because Mr. Russo's daughter Kate used to be a good friend of mine before she graduated, but I loved 'Empire Falls'. I had to read it for AP English, and it was the only book this year that I actually bothered to finish. I know that the high school parts of the book probably suck for most adults, but they reminded me of my middle school art class, actually. I think all of us have known that quiet guy who looks like he's going to freak out and kill people, and John Voss perfectly fits the description of one. Go Mr. Russo!

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