Media outlets have fallen over themselves to be the first to declare Jonathan Franzen the "Greatest American Novelist." The truth is that there is no such thing—it's a dumb declaration from lazy journalists who don't read that often—but Franzen fills an important need. With The Corrections and his newest, Freedom, he's proven that he can write literary novels that strike a populist chord. It's a rare and lovely thing when everybody buzzes about a beautifully written book, rather than the usual secret-code-of-the-Mormon-vampire tripe; this is a literary frenzy to savor. (Benaroya Hall, 200 University St, 621-2230, 7:30 pm, $15–$70)