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Joyce Carol Oates's epic novel of an American family in the 1950's probes the tender division between the permissible and the forbidden, between ordinary life and the secret places of the heart. Set in an industrial, working-class town in upstate New York, this book chronicles the frustrating marriage of parents Lyle and Hannah; the idealistic political journey of son Warren, and the passionate, obsessive relationship that develops between 15-year-old Enid Maria and her uncle Felix, a professional boxer twice her age. While brilliantly re-creating a decade that worshipped conformity, You Must Remember This presents the lives of family members that break every convention in the search for meaning and fulfillment.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||6.14(w) x 9.04(h) x 0.96(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Hometown:Princeton, New Jersey
Date of Birth:June 16, 1938
Place of Birth:Lockport, New York
Education:B.A., Syracuse University, 1960; M.A., University of Wisconsin, 1961
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This mid-length novel details the lives of Enid, Felix and Lyle Stevick very well, weaving them together in violent, explicit and tragic ways to show a tapestry of life in America’s “golden years”. Though published in 1987, You Must Remember This exposes taboo topics from the fifties. This novel will cultivate readership today and tomorrow because these “forbidden” topics of childhood sexuality, lust, governmental distrust, death, mortality, self-control and rebellion remain relevant. Oates depiction of a grey, dilapidated fictitious town in upstate New York is uncanny and parallels real-life upstate New York well (sorry Buffalo area). Through her excellent writing, Oates makes this novel worth the read even with an unclear resolution. Maybe this was her intention, to startle, shock and jolt the reader into a new perspective on adolescent sexuality and our own mortality. Grab a large glass of cabernet, your snuggie and slightly overweight cat and get ready for a gripping and powerful novel that will erase your weekend. Final book rating: 82/100
The book seemed to me to be typical Joyce Carol Oates. Her characters are so richly drawn that you feel they are neighbors. In this particular book, the characters are not likeable but I still cared about what happened to them. The different twists in plot that she takes and the suspense she builds kept me turning the pages eager to find out what the outcome would be but at the end I still felt there was more story to be told.
I found this book to be extremely boring. It starts off all right, but just seems to drag on and on without every getting anywhere. I would recommend reading The Falls instead. It is much better than this one.
A truly entertaining novel by Ms Oates! My first time reading one of her books and certainly not the last. The Stevicks are a very realistic family who will always keep you turning pages to find out what happens next. The relationship between Enid and her 'uncle' Felix is strange and enchanting, forbidden yet,secretly you want happiness for them. The political atmosphere reminds one of Tolstoy, strangly. A Must Read!
I have read many books by Joyce Carol Oates, but I love this one the most. It reads easily and truthfully, and I plan to read it again. Highly recommended.