Imperial Bedrooms

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Imperial Bedrooms Fiction
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Product Description

Ellis's latest novel plugs in to the infamous teenagers that populated his first novel, Less Than Zero, some thirty years later - when their lives reflect an even more desperate middle age. Clay, a successful sceenwriter, returns from New York to Los Angeles to help cast his new movie. But his own demons emerge once he meets a gorgeous young actress determined to win a role in his film. When his life careens out of control, he's forced to come to terms with the deepest recesses of his character - and with his proclivity for betrayal. There's also Blair, his former girlfriend, Treat, a powerful manager and bisexual philanderer, Julian a recovering addict, and Rip the dealer of numerous facelifts.

Editorial Reviews

A sequel to Less Than Zero (1985). Twenty-five years ago, Ellis made his popular debut with a slim novel that took its title from an Elvis Costello song. It concerned drug-addled young hipsters in Los Angeles and was widely perceived as the West Coast equivalent of Bright Lights, Big City, Jay McInerney's novel about drug-addled young professionals in Manhattan. Ellis's sequel takes its name from a later Elvis Costello album, and the young hipsters have gotten older. Some of them continue to lust after young flesh, though that flesh—like drugs and talent—is just another commodity in Hollywood, which may seem like a seller's market to those peddling their wares but may be more of a buyer's market, where supply (particularly for attractive young flesh) exceeds demand. Narrator Clay has become a bicoastal screenwriter, recently returned to Los Angeles from New York. He is either paranoid or the target of a great conspiracy. Or maybe he's part of that great conspiracy. In any event, the narrative meanders from party to party, where Clay encounters seemingly random characters, some of whom he knew in the first novel, until the randomness starts to tighten into a web. A young actress seems attracted to him, or what passes for attraction between a supplicant and someone who might do her career some good. But who holds the power here? And just what kind of guy is our narrator, anyway? "This isn't a script," warns his boyhood friend, Julian, who is also somehow connected with the actress. "It's not going to add up. Not everything's going to come together in the third act." This warning might be better directed toward the reader, who must determine whether another character's insight that "everything's an illusion" is profundity or cliché. The novel is short, elliptical and sketchy—even jumpy—but it feels like it takes forever to end.Don't hold your breath for act three.First printing of 100,000 Copyright Kirkus 2010 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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