Dubbed "Great American Novelist" by <i>Time</i>, Jonathan Franzen is undoubtedly a key literary figure in the United States, having firmly established his status with the expansive novels <i>The Corrections</i> (2001) and <i>Freedom</i> (2010). A Midwestern native, Franzen has drawn extensively on his upbringing in Middle America, with his first novel, <i>The Twenty-Seventh City</i> (1988), set in St. Louis, where he spent much of his childhood. His second book, <i>Strong Motion</i> (1992), met with muted response, and he didn't prominently resurface until the publication of his third novel, <i>The Corrections</i> (2001), a family saga that became a major literary success. Taking his time with the follow-up, Franzen unveiled the eagerly anticipated <i>Freedom</i> in 2010, with its generally warm reception proving that <i>The Corrections</i> was far from a fluke. Unabashedly outspoken and committed to intriguing portrayals of American families, Franzen seemed intent on maintaining this revered rank by staying true to his singular vision.