Publishing insiders say Jonathan Franzen’s new book, “Freedom,” will be an Oprah Book Club choice, which means even more people will read the story of a fractured family that lives, in the early chapters, in St. Paul.
We explored last week whether that’s a good thing for St. Paul, because the book paints a rather grimy picture of life on Ramsey Hill in the 1980s.
Even before the Oprah seal of approval, the book has become a top best-seller, thanks to Franzen’s reputation after his 2001 “The Corrections,” and tons of advance publicity for the new title. Franzen was even on the cover of Time magazine.
The Oprah-Franzen connection has a back story: Nine years ago “The Corrections” was selected for the Oprah Book Club and the author was scheduled to appear on her television program to discuss the book. But when he was quoted downplaying her endorsement, she dis-invited him from the show.
Apparently, all is forgiven.