My first introduction to Auster's work is a good one. He has a wonderful way of writing and created a "story of survival" that might even make a cynic think that things can get better.
Follies is set around the time of Bush stealing his election and 9/11. But thankfully, not a lot of time is spent on national events. The majority of time is spent getting to know Nathan Glass, a 60ish year old man who comes to Brooklyn to find a quiet place to die. Recently divorced and a survivor of lung cancer, he's all but given up on himself. Enter Tom Wood, his nephew who he had lost touch with for years. Tom lives in Brooklyn as well and is in the same boat as his uncle, unhappy, feeling without redemption and unable to move forward.
Family is key to this novel, not just blood relatives but the strangers-turned-friends kind of family. Everyone is trying to survive and banding together, the motley crue in Follies does just that.