I admire Jonathan Franzen’s fiction; however, many people I know find him frustrating, annoying and/or outrageous. If you are a fan, you won’t be able to put Purity down; if you’re not, don’t bother picking it up.
Purity is the name of a young woman who would much preferred being called Pip. Franzen’s novel follows her from Santa Cruz to Oakland to Bolivia to Denver. Along the way, she encounters a cast of complex, memorable characters who are drawn to her for different reasons.
There are times when some of the subplots appear tangential or confusing. Don’t worry, eventually everything comes together and Pip’s journey becomes clear.