Philip Roth's fiction has often explored the human need to demolish, to challenge, to oppose, to pull apart. Now, writing with deep understanding, ... Show synopsis Philip Roth's fiction has often explored the human need to demolish, to challenge, to oppose, to pull apart. Now, writing with deep understanding, with enormous power and scope and great storytelling energy, he focuses on the counterforce: the longing for an ordinary life. Seymour 'Swede' Levov - a legendary high school athlete, a devoted family man, a hard worker, the prosperous inheritor of his father's glove factory - comes of age in thriving, triumphant, postwar America. He has a beautiful wife - Miss New Jersey 1949 - and a lively, precocious daughter, Merry. She is the apple of his eye until America begins to run amok in the turbulent 1960s and Merry grows up to be a revolutionary terrorist bent on destroying her father's paradise. With vigorous realism, one of America's most esteemed writers takes us back to the conflicts and violent transitions of the 1960s. This is a book about loving - and hating - America. It's a book about wanting to belong- and refusing to belong - to America. It sets the desire for an American pastoral - a respectable life of space, calm, order, optimism, and achievement - against the indigenous American berserk.