Where's the book?

Friday, July 15, 2016

#15 back to the seventies on a "Speedboat"

Probably the only thing I really liked about this strange book by Renata Adler was its depiction of New York City in the 1970s. It captures the grey gritty harshness and energy of that time perfectly, which it should, since the book is a sort-of roman a clef of Adler's life as a swinging journalist in this city in that difficult decade. 

The book doesn't have any sort of conventional plot or recurring characters. We don't even find out the name of the young journalist narrator until the second half of the novel. It is a series of disjointed paragraphs, anecdotes, and stories that are by turns pointed, funny, neurotic, telling, occasionally moving, even more occasionally boring, that add up to a pointillist portrait of a time and place. It's the kind of book you can pick up and put down whenever. Some of the anecdotes are quite gripping, some left me cold. 

More of a collage than anything else, it's an entirely different sort of book. And while I might pick it up again sometime, read a paragraph or two, and walk away, I wouldn't recommend it to anyone who likes those old fusty things like plot, or character, or story. 

No comments:

Post a Comment