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Publisher's Summary

The second novel in the dazzling Last Hundred Years trilogy, from the winner of the Pulitzer Prize.

It's 1953. When a funeral brings the Langdon family together once more, they little realize how much, over the coming years, each of their worlds will shift and change.

For now Walter and Rosanna's sons and daughters are grown up and have children of their own. Frank, the eldest - restless, unhappy - ignores his troubled wife and instead finds himself distracted by a face from the past. Lillian must watch as her brilliant, eccentric husband, Arthur, is destroyed by the guilt arising from his secretive government work. Claire, too, finds that marriage is not quite what she expected it to be.

In Iowa, where the Langdons began, Joe sees that some aspects of life on the farm never change while others are unrecognizable. And though a few members of the family remain mired in the past, others will attempt to move beyond the lives they have always known, and some will push forward as never before. The dark shadow of the Vietnam War hangs over every one....

In sickness and health, through their best and darkest times, the Langdon family will live and love and suffer against the broad, merciless sweep of American history.

Moving from the 1950s to the 1980s, Early Warning is epic storytelling at its most wise and compelling from a writer at the height of her powers.

©2015 Jane Smiley (P)2015 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

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  • Overall
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  • Jan Etty
  • 25-08-2016

Was this the most boring book I have ever read?

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

someone who enjoys immense detail may like this book

Would you ever listen to anything by Jane Smiley again?

no, not for me I am afraid

Have you listened to any of Lorelei King’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No I have not, however she did a very good job; an easy voice to listen to

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Thank goodness all our preferences vary but I did not manage to finish "Early Warning" as it was sadly not to my taste, however; because of the vast detail of the scenes and characters of the book it could be imagined clearly from her descriptions.

Any additional comments?

It felt to me that the continuous almost irrelevant detail could have been there to fill out a book rather than for necessity. I am sure that people will enjoy the book, this is a purely personal view.

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  • Barbara
  • 04-10-2015

Gentle narrative

Ostensibly not much happening but actually lots simmering underneath.....like most of life really. Lorelei King reads it well with no melodrama but a fine sense of drama and irony. Perfect listening on my daily commute!