With Empire Falls Richard Russo cements his reputation as one of Americaâ€™s most compelling and compassionate storytellers. Miles Roby has been slinging burgers at the Empire Grill for 20 years, a job that cost him his college education and much of his self-respect. What keeps him there? It could be his bright, sensitive daughter Tick, who needs all his help surviving the local high school. Or maybe itâ€™s Janine, Milesâ€™ soon-to-be ex-wife, whoâ€™s taken up with a noxiously vain health-club proprietor. Or perhaps itâ€™s the imperious Francine Whiting, who owns everything in townâ€“and seems to believe that â€śeverythingâ€ť includes Miles himself. In Empire Falls Richard Russo delves deep into the blue-collar heart of America in a work that overflows with hilarity, heartache, and grace.