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Brightness Falls Paperback – March 31, 1993
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
- Patricia Ross, Westerville P.L., Ohio
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
This is the third McInerney novel I've read, and I can now say that I am a fan. "Brightness Falls" is denser and more complex than "Bright Lights, Big City" and "Story of My Life" but it doesn't hit a false note. He conveys late 80s Manhattan perfectly, and juggles the myriad points of view like a pro.
Why this novel does not have "National Bestseller" emblazoned across the top surprises me. Perhaps in 1992, people just weren't in the mood to read a novel about 80s excess, feeling it was too soon. Their loss. Several years on, this novel holds up very well. Interesting that the book also somewhat mirrors the Manhattan of today, where finance is once again booming, real estate is over the top and many are living well. People live high, and there's no real sign of stopping. Will this new world of ugly luxury condos (face it, they're ugly), the vanishing arts frontier and dwindling middle class last forever, supplanting a vibrant city with a glossy, homogeneous veneer? It seems that way; nobody foresees an end to to this new gilded age. The hubris is thick in the air and brightness falls when people least expect it.
Brightness Falls is a needed morality tale (and history lesson) for a lost generation. I read this book nearly twenty years ago, yet the characters and story still resonant within me. Our culture is ruled by greed, unbridled ambition and more of everything. This is the fuel for our very lives - a good citizen today is a good consumer. Our responsibility, if we do not wish for the house of cards to falls, is to buy lots of crap - crap we not need, with money we do not have to impress people we do lot like!
Brightness Falls features the quest of a couple for the golden ring - wealth, fame and privilege.
It is a story about all of us - about Americans who came of age in the Reagan Era and beyond. It speaks the truth about what rests in our hearts and our desire to skip the mundane and difficult aspects of life - and just experience the fun and easy. We know all to well that life is full of challenges, struggle, pain, suffering, mean bosses, and disappointment.
But, this is not true, not for the well to do (or so we think). The rich live a different life. This is the story we have been told, and sold, anyway. Over last century, beginning with the stories of Horatio Alger, we've been indoctrinated with the belief that every man can attain high-society status. Everyone can be rich, famous and "important." For many, this has become an obsession - one for which they will sacrifice their morals, ethics and their very soul to attain. We have witnessed this time and again over the past 30 years.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have a love/hate relationship with this author. While I find most of his male characters to be douche bags and his female characters to be one dimensional, I still keep reading. Read morePublished 5 days ago by nerdita
I know many readers things this is one of McInerney's books, which is why I purchased it. Perhaps it is a generational thing, but I'm finding it to be rather pedantic. Read morePublished 29 days ago by Barbara Melton Perkins
Jay McInerney is clever, witty and literate but can be extremely tone deaf at times. This book was a nice diversion but not what I was hoping for. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Kenneth G. Richards
It's such a good reflection of the time and the type of people it represents. And I like that the book, with so many personalities that have so much not to like about them, keeps... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
The brilliance of the language and the depth of the insights. Archetypal characters playing their role on the world stage during a poignant time in our history.Published 2 months ago by Velva Lee Heraty
I really like this writer. I can't wait to open the book to find out what's next. That's the best kind of read.Published 2 months ago by Patricia Catania
Great "period piece" of late 80s NYC/cultural cross-section, and stellar writing.Published 2 months ago by sbosak
In his novel Brightness Falls, Jay McInerney pieces together all the important elements that make a great novel. Read morePublished 4 months ago by RRC