John Updike introduced the world to Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom in his 1960 novel "Rabbit, Run."

The character resonated enough with Updike and his readers that he decided to revisit Harry eleven years later with "Rabbit Redux."

At 36, Harry finds himself without direction. He feels little connection with his son Nelson; he finds it difficult to relate to his dying mother; his marriage lacks passion; his dead-end job provides no satisfaction; and the tumultuous events of the late 1960s anger and confuse conservative Harry. Why must young people protest the war in Vietnam? Don't they realize how necessary it is?

His wife Janice's affair fails to move him, prompting her to move in with her lover.

Not long after Janice's departure, two people move in with Harry and Nelson: radical Black drug dealer Skeeter and 18-year-old runaway Jill.

Like its predecessor, "Rabbit Redux" takes us on a crisis-filled time in the life of everyman Rabbit. As in "Run," "Redux" ends with an inevitable tragedy. And, like the earlier book, this one draws the reader into the immediacy of events by telling its story entirely in the present tense.

"Redux" earned Updike his first of two Pulitzer Prizes. The novel's power comes from the author's ability to make the reader sympathize with an inherently unlikeable character. Rabbit's poor decisions and character flaws lead to his downfall. He is morally ambiguous - a middle-aged man taking drugs from Skeeter and sex from Jull as an escape from his mundane life.

Yet we still feel for him and for those around him.