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Slaves of New York Paperback – May 31, 1991
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Intertwined with the Eleanor stories are the unreliable first-person narratives of Marley Mantello. Marley, too, has serious real estate issues: "My apartment, the sublet from which I was being evicted, looked just as terrible as when I had gone out earlier--worse, even, for there was a foul reek of something fecund and feline, like the stench of old lion spoor upon the veldt."
The rest of the stories are brief thumbnails, which Janowitz calls "modern saints" and "case histories." Stabbing at experimentalism, they showcase her shortcomings--the lazy satire, the easy laugh. This author's prose seemed of-the-moment when it came out, and time has not been altogether kind. "I was startled to find him so far uptown, knowing how he usually refused to travel above Fourteenth Street, claiming it led to mental decay," says the narrator of "In and Out of the Cat Bag." This kind of observation may have seemed edgy in 1985, but has little staying power. At its best, Slaves effervesces a bittersweet nostalgia for a time when artists could still afford to live in Manhattan. --Claire Dederer
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
I only read this book because I heard that the character of Stash is in Ellis' book American Psycho. Overall, I found myself interested in the stories and the characters, but most of the stories lacked a certain human aspect that the other two authors know how to provide. This is a good read if you're stuck in an airport all day with nothing else, otherwise I'd recommend getting something with more substance.
Marley Mantello and his brother Achilles are a scream, along with his mom who is so fat that it takes all her energy just to rest. She has so much fat on her body that she appears to have no bones on her feet, "her little figgys". She tells Marley she thinks she's pregnant from having sex twice with a professor of the politics of television. Marley plans to name the baby Achilles and raise it as his own.
The book is well-written and descriptive of the egotistic, narcissistic and shallow self-centeredness of minor artistes.
This book captures the lives of the wacky, egocentric NY artists who reflect their hated yuppie counterparts in that they're upwardly mobile, albeit nonconformistly, greedy and self-centered. But unlike yuppies, the artists of the Lower East Side present far more colorful stories and egos to capitalize on.
Fortunately the book has Eleanor, the self-deprecating protagonist to whom we all endear. She keeps the book light-hearted and comical, as she is the offbeat among the offbeat, the miscast in the world of misfits. She is the self-conscious woman who clashes with, and makes uncomfortable, her fellow carefree artists. But she eventually finds her ground in the big city. We root for because she conquers the city the way we wish we could: by keeping intact our integrity, humility, and naivete, and not succumbing to the cynicism and selfishness of the "Me" generation.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I don't care if this has the 80s all over it, Janowitz is a damn good writer. She's funny and she doesn't try at all to pander to the cool people. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Lauren Hauptman
I read this book in the late 80's, I was around 19. It was given to me as a gift from a man I was dating. It is a humorous look at dating, co-habitation, financial trouble, etc. Read morePublished on November 20, 2011 by Dari T.
The book is semi-interesting. I must confess i had seen the movie before i bought it, and loved its quirky way, and characters, so i had ALOT of pre-conceived ideas about the book. Read morePublished on April 4, 2011 by D. Loftus
The stories in this book describe an ecosystem existing around artists in New York during the early 80s. Read morePublished on October 20, 2010 by John Heard
New Yorkers vs New York.
Required reading for every social studies student.
The title is a perfect description of the contents. Read more
Interlinked stories about Greenwich Village artists in the 1980's. The shades of "Trilby" "La Boheme" and "The Moon and Sixpence" hover. Read morePublished on February 23, 2005 by D. P. Birkett
Tama, relationship are sometimes geografical a long way off...
I live in Bratislava, Slovakia