Customer Reviews for

A Fortunate Age

Average Rating 2.5
( 69 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(6)

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(23)

2 Star

(26)

1 Star

(11)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

A Fortunate Age

I thoroughly enjoyed ¿A Fortunate Age¿ and thought it was a solid debut novel for Rakoff. The characters were interesting, one that I did not like, one that I could relate to, and one that I could aspire to be. She hit all categories. The author did a good job of e...
I thoroughly enjoyed ¿A Fortunate Age¿ and thought it was a solid debut novel for Rakoff. The characters were interesting, one that I did not like, one that I could relate to, and one that I could aspire to be. She hit all categories. The author did a good job of establishing interesting characters in a tale of life after college. Many of us can relate to the experiences of the women portrayed. As one reviewer noted, the chapters focused on an individual character with the others fading into the background. I felt at times that the story was complicated for an enjoyable, escapism read ¿ which is why I read fiction. I had to stop and think about how to connect the dots from Rose to Sadie when perhaps the focus was on Beth¿a stronger connection to the characters might have occurred for me if their experiences had been interwoven throughout. I thought the level of writing was superb and the focus on New York City and Oberlin were a draw to me as I have an interest in ¿The City¿ and historical colleges that have always supported the education of women. Anything writer that values smart, educated women is a hero in my book! I am glad to see the realism in the writings; that even educated women struggle with life and that in the end, our friends are the ones that are always there to support us, even in the most difficult times. As we all tend to find out through life, it is generally the death of a close friend that makes you stop and evaluate your life and what you have accomplished. Rakoff did leave me wondering what the future holds for these characters.

posted by sjj on January 30, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Mediocre

This episodic novel traces the lives of a group of friends during the ten years or so after they graduate from Oberlin. The volume of the characters was sometimes disorienting; the four women friends are followed in detail, with somewhat less information about their mal...
This episodic novel traces the lives of a group of friends during the ten years or so after they graduate from Oberlin. The volume of the characters was sometimes disorienting; the four women friends are followed in detail, with somewhat less information about their male friends Dave and Tal. To me, though, the bigger problem is the nearly relentless focus on life¿s problems¿but without developing any kind of larger plot. Their jobs are problematic, their friends don¿t understand. The only good things that happen to the characters involve getting married and having babies (now THERE¿S a startling plot line for women in their late twenties and early thirties), but these simply bring their own new sets of problems. I kept reading because the characters are, honestly, compelling (though they seem a bit two-dimensional, made of nothing but their careers and their love lives¿none of them seemed to have any other interests or hobbies), but after I was finished, I wasn¿t quite sure what I¿d gotten from the book. It does not end on any kind of hopeful note. In short, it is a novel that relates to the world in a fundamentally different way than I do.

posted by jholcomb on January 3, 2009

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  • Posted January 27, 2009

    Pretentious and lacks plot

    I think the book might have good bones, but it is hard to tell under all of the showy, meaningless language that fills this book. There is no thread of a story, just ill-joined vignettes that may or may not have to do with the ones that come before and after. I finished the book because I had hopes that there might be some redeeming quality to it, but was disappointed and confused.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Not worth my time

    Characters that I didn't care about and that were not fully developed made this novel a waste of my time. She writes in a confusing way and puts in tons of boring and useless details. Would not recommend this book when there are so many great reads out there.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2009

    Not as good as I thought

    I was excited to read this book when I got it. The first couple chapters were pretty good. But as the book went on, I found that I was starting to skim through pages and over all was not very interested in what was going on. There was too much jumping from one character to another with no true interaction of the main characters introduced in the first chapter. Over all I became very bored with this book. Unfortunatly it is one I will not be recommending to anyone.

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  • Posted March 14, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    "Jumpy"

    This book was not for me it was a chore to get through it. A group of friends who really did not seem like friends at all. Simply too many characters none of which connected with me. Chapters were long and choppy. No closure to any part of the story. Book ended with many unanswered questions and left me not even wanting to find out the answers.

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  • Posted February 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    a fortunate age

    very tedious and very boring i just couldnt get into it. it just seemed the description of the characaters and the theme of the book was very long. i tried to finish it but just couldnt get into it. their wasnt really any theme to it at all.

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    Posted January 14, 2010

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    Posted January 14, 2010

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    Posted February 5, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2009

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    Posted February 21, 2009

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    Posted August 17, 2009

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