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The sequel to Richard Ford's highly acclaimed 1986 novel "The Sportswriter" picks up loquacious narrator-hero Frank Bascombe six years after the previous book left off. The new book, says TIME critic Paul Gray, repeats the effective formula of "The Sportswriter:" a flurry of intense activity in the present combined with Frank's ruminations on a past that still troubles him and whose meaning he would like to pin down. Unfortunately, he never does, says Gray, and in the end Frank "remains a bigger mystery to the reader than he is to himself."
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