What a treat!
I actually watched the HBO mini-serie when I was about 10 years old (I became aware of that fact about halfway through the book) but I still had to read the book, partly because of my OCD; which makes it both painful and nerve wracking to not finish a book, but mostly because of the writing of Mr. Russo.
His cynical point of view on human interaction makes this book one of my favorite. There is no vilains in this stories, just different people reacting to each others. I didn't even hate Jon Voss or Mrs. Whiting for Christ Sake!
Talking about the Christ, I also like the omnipresence (or in Max's instance, the absence) of the Catholic guilt throughout theses 300 and some pages. How this particular feeling is sometime used by people that are freed from it, for "power and control".
Somehow, almost all the characters try to do the exact opposite of their predecessors, but somehow only succeed in repeating a fainted carbon copies of their lives. All Whiting male having failed in finding happiness in their matrimonial unions, Candace repeating her mother's mistake by falling in and out of love with random dudes, etc.
Empire falls is more than just small town in Maine, it's the fall of many things; it's the fall of Faith, the fall of the American-Dream. Masks falls a nothing is left standing but the hard, naked, goose-bumpy truth.