Bret Easton Ellis in Atlanta tonight Fri. 6/18/10

Casey McKinney


from Matt’s Listing: The famed author of American Psycho will be reading from his forthcoming book Imperial Bedrooms. Many cheer this book’s June arrival on as it’s the 25th- anniversary sequel to Less Than Zero, but others offer their jeers. Highly doubtful those people will be at this event, modern people are too modern busy to go to events they hold distaste for, because there is the internet.

Imperial Bedrooms fits into that odd placement of being a sequel technically, but not really – a form Ellis tap-danced with on Rules of Attraction, which only alluded to being the pre-courser tale to American Psycho.


At SCAD, Ivy Hall, Friday June 18th, tonight.  See here for info.
And note: CM here, I was just doing a blog of this and explaining a bit of the plot within plots… then the computer crashed… and I started hearing helicopters overhead when that went down and started wondering who moved all my shit around in the fridge (inside joke, read the Ellis oeuvre).

Anyway, Clay the character from Less Than Zero is the narrator in the latest, not the Clay in the Less Than Zero book per se, and especially not the movie, as he explains (though Julian dug it, even though he died in it), but apparently the one that book was based on; he’s real life, man. But then that’s the enigma, wrapped inside a sushi roll, wrapped inside a condom square, tucked inside a bag of blow that is some of Ellis’ work (and what many see as his whole bag…they don’t get past the surface, and the surface is always a foil). There’s Raymond Chandler here in a femme fatale starlit that Clay, 25 years older and out in LA from NYC advising on the casting of what seems to be The Informers movie – it’s called The Listeners – gets entangled with. He takes this job about as seriously as the narrator of his last book took teaching MFA students in a small New England college. And like in that book, his sexcapades start falling apart, the ghosts are still chasing him, and he ends up finding himself more apt for the therapist’s couch (even though his Dr. Woolf ditches him as a client mid-novel) more so than the casting couch. But I’ll leave the plot there. Cept to say there’s mysterious murders out by the wayside, but you could imagine that.

You can listen to Andrew McCarthy read the book if you buy the audio edition. I do enjoy listening to it, especially hearing him have to complain about the movie he starred in, as Clay, the narrator here. And 25 years later, his Buster Keaton silent good looks (but not funny) have taken on a funny mode (he sounds like David Sedaris. As Warhol predicted, we’d all be famous for 15 minutes, which Youtube and Reality TV have proven; btw Glamorama did a good setup for the silly futility of seeking fame in this day and age too, and if you ever wanted to know what assholes Wall Street could be (as we saw in the 2007 meltdown, happens every 7 years btw) you could do no better than dip back into American Psycho, or Michael Lewis, ’bout the same, just one’s satire, and one’s a weeper.

But come out tonight and watch Ellis read. And I wanna be at that SCAD party afterwards, or at least imagine what it could be/have been….how are his handlers on this one (that’s a Lunar Park joke…okay, see you later and more on all this later too). -Casey Mckinney

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