Rated of 5
Full of characters you come to love, Empire Falls remains with me many weeks after having read it. Our hero, a flawed, though decent man, tries to get through life in a town that is fading fast. He deals with a quirky father patiently, a troubled daughter, an ex-wife who seems to regret her decision to divorce, the memory of a mother with a deep secret. The surprise ending seems cut out of current headlines, and detracts from the payoff at the end. Despite this, I recommend it highly.