|Things Fall Apart|
|Publication date||December, 2013|
|Preceded by||All Fall Down|
The novel picks up immediately after the second volume, All Fall Down. The San Atanasio police department is still reeling from the discovery of the identity of the South Bay Strangler, and Colin Ferguson's career receives a boost. His wife, Kelly returns to work after giving birth to their daughter Deborah. His eldest child, Rob, finds relative happiness in isolated northern Maine. His youngest child, Marshall continues to be moderately successful as a writer, while living at home. His middle child, Vanessa, jealous of her younger brother's success, attempts to jump-start her own writing career while maintaining a relationship. Colin's ex-wife, Louise, raises her own young son James on her own. Bryce Miller teaches at a university in the frozen wasteland of Wayne, Nebraska.
The novel covers a period of 2-3 years as the United States tries to establish a new normal domestically, while realizing it is now no longer a global superpower.
The book's title is derived from the poem "The Second Coming" by Irish poet William Butler Yeats: "Turning and turning in the widening gyre/The falcon cannot hear the falconer;/ Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;/Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,/The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere/The ceremony of innocence is drowned;/The best lack all conviction, while the worst/Are full of passionate intensity."
- Things Fall Apart: Annotated for a list of annotations of minor references in the novel, by hardcover page number and by subject.