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Paul Auster’s Sunset Park is set in the sprawling flatlands of Florida, where twenty-eight-year-old Miles is photographing the last lingering traces of families who have abandoned their houses due to debt or foreclosure. Miles is haunted by guilt for having inadvertently caused the death of his step-brother, a situation that caused him to flee his father and step-mother in New York seven years ago.
What keeps him in Florida is his relationship with a teenage high-school girl, Pilar, but when her family threatens to expose their relationship, Miles decides to protect Pilar by going back to Brooklyn, where he settles in a squat to prepare himself to face the inevitable confrontation with his father – a confrontation he has been avoiding for years.
Set against the backdrop of the devastating global recession, and pulsing with the energy of Auster’s previous novel Invisible, Sunset Park is as mythic as it is contemporary, as in love with baseball as it is with literature. It is above all, a story about love and forgiveness – not only among men and women, but also between fathers and sons.
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