At the heart of this collection of rock-inspired fiction are the figures of Les Mulligan, an ageing popstar ravaged by drink, drugs and creative doubts, and Richard, the cynical promoter planning his comeback. Themes and people echo between the stories.
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A manically careening debut collection from Davies, the lead singer and songwriter for the 1960s band The Kinks and author of his unauthorized autobiography, X-Ray (1995). Davies devotes the first half of the volume to his apparent doppelgnger, the former British pop/rock icon and current has- been Les Mulligan, and Mulligan's nebbish of an agent, Richard Tennent. Impoverished and always near mental breakdown, Mulligan resists attempts by Tennent and others to revive his career and instead confront[s] the demons by panhandling in public parks and undertaking other misadventures that presume to paint the tortured soul of an insecure true artist. With a confused structure and lines like He turned to another lyric. Or was it a new chapter in his life?, this first section seems a mixed-up, unfinished mess. What follows, however, appears to have unaccountably sprung from the mind of a seasoned and mature author, not the aging hipster who wrote the aforementioned. This series of vaguely connected pieces includes the charming ``Mr. Pleasant,'' in which a dandy accountant at the end of his career briefly considers a dalliance with a dominatrix for hire, discovers his inability to empathize, and, as do many characters here, reconciles himself with the Faustian bargains hes made. Muriel, a silent vagrant who passed briefly through the narrative of Les Mulligan, is awarded a magical account of her own, Voices in the Dark, in which she serves as the mute therapist who hears everyone and judges no one. In Return to Waterloo, the finaland finestentry, Davies writes a gem of a character study. Frightening and funny, it portrays the quiet, seething rage and misogyny of a serial rapist who just wants some respect. When Davies abandons the embarrassing navel-gazing of a musician gone stale, he creates storytelling as surprising and unique as the song lyrics he wrote decades ago. -- Copyright ©2000, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
Davies rose to rock stardom as leader of the Kinks, and chronicled that rise in X-Ray, his autobiography. This sharp but uneven debut short story collection examines the underbelly of the business that made his fortune. In the opening tale, aging British rocker Les finds himself washed up in late '80s Los Angeles, hungry for a record deal and a trustworthy manager. He connects with shrewd, manipulative Richard Tennent, himself eager to make quick money after the '87 stock market crash. Despite his suspicions, Les sets to work on a demo tape that will wow the bigwigs at United Records. His efforts dredge up the host of memories that provide the plots for most of the tales to follow. (Davies divides the collection into "Waterloo Sunset"--the first 20 stories, all linked by Les's memories--and seven independent "Stories," some of which feature Les.) In one tale, Les watches a rabid rock fan unravel after his girlfriend abandons him. In the next, Les's girlfriend, Donna, begins a dangerous flirtation with a vagabond painter. "Return to Waterloo," the final narrative, ventures inside the mind of a serial rapist riding the London Underground. Classic Davies songs (among them "Celluloid Heroes," "This Is Where I Belong" and "Misfits") provide templates and titles for a number of stories; some incorporate lyrics. This conflation of rock music and literature has its pitfalls, and the stories that close by quoting entire Kinks songs seem both self-serving and unfinished. Though Davies's fiction can be both inventive and grittily realistic, it suffers from a tendency to preach against obvious targets (money-grubbing rock executives, bourgeois British snobs). The loose narrative structure can also confound readers. Tighter editing could have made this a rewarding look into the music business. As is, it's a book only die-hard Davies fans will love. (Feb.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Descrizione libro Penguin Uk, 1998. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P11014025336X
Descrizione libro Penguin Uk. PAPERBACK. Condizione libro: New. 014025336X New Condition. Codice libro della libreria NEW6.1780429
Descrizione libro Penguin Uk 1998-07-30, 1998. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. 014025336X We guarantee all of our items - customer service and satisfaction are our top priorities. Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Codice libro della libreria TM-014025336X
Descrizione libro Penguin Uk, 1998. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX014025336X