- Series: Midnight Classics
- Paperback: 222 pages
- Publisher: Serpent's Tail (August 1, 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1852424419
- ISBN-13: 978-1852424411
- Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5 x 0.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,344,995 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Slide Area (Midnight Classics) Paperback – August 1, 1997
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From Library Journal
Lambert, a British film critic and Hollywood screenwriter, plows familiar territory in this 1959 collection of stories that portray a bevy of tinsel-town lowlifes.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Most of all there is enormous skill: the author has the playwright's flair for taut, meaningful dialogue; the novelist's feeling for mood, the short-story writer's love of plot; and the good movie writer's capacity for deft characterization that is visual as well as psychological * New York Times * These are the most truthful stories about the film world and its suburbia I have ever read * Christopher Isherwood * A brilliant piece of work, terse, compassionate, and beautifully made. It earns a place on anyone's shelves along with Scott Fitzgerald's The Last Tycoon and Nathanael West's The Day of the Locust * Times Literary Supplement *
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Top customer reviews
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"The Slide Area" is a more tender novel than "The Day of the Locust" but whose portraits are equally piercing. The book is divided into seven sections, and, taken on their own, stand as short stories to a larger collection; but I read the book as one novel. The narrator is a faceless and nameless script-writer who seems untouched by all that surrounds him. He is almost a neutral bystander to the proceedings he describes, in the way Nick is in "The Great Gatsby." Lambert describes the geography of Los Angeles, Hollywood and Pacific Palisades with a keen eye, catching all of the glorious detail of that area. The main character is drawn to the "Slide Area" of the book's title: the place, like the people, is in constant danger of crumbling and falling off into the ocean. The narrator struggles to keep his feet firm in this precarious terrain, as the people he does business with seem unable to keep their heads above water.
It's an ugly world Lambert depicts, but there is a heart at its center, and that is what I find so attractive about this novel. While the stories of what goes on behind the scenes of the film industry are told in frank and brutally honest ways, it's the heart at the center of this world that brought me pleasure. It's a sensitive story Lambert tells in these mini-stories. The pacing of the chapters is excellent. Just as I was sensing an end to one story, it would come to an end, the feeling of closure coming at just the right moment.
So, it is the same geography (both literally and figuratively) as "The Day of the Locust" but this book lacks the gruesome punch found in "Day." This is NOT a fault I have with the book; its tenderness endures long after one has finished it.