Jane Smiley is a master of expansive, effortlessly readable sagas, and this is no exception.
The final, magnificent instalment in a trilogy of novels spanning the American century from 1919 to 2019, Golden Age opens in 1987 with a reunion of the central Langdon clan.
Their fortunes in the years that follow are intimately bound up with those of their nation, not least in the case of twins Michael and Richie, the former a Wall Street wolf and the latter an accidental politician who ends up in Clinton's White House.
Post-9/11, another family member is deployed to Iraq, yet Smiley's characters never seem like narrative pawns and are all beautifully drawn in their quirks, enmities and affections.
As deft at documenting private histories as official ones, she writes lightly but affectingly about ageing, a recurring theme along with the gathering storm of climate change.
Yet while we're left in no doubt as to the imminence of environmental catastrophe, this is a very funny novel, and when one character damns the 'baggy violet strangeness' that is fashion in 1989, most of us will, ruefully, identify.