May 16, 2008

Bright Shiny Morning by James Frey

I started this with great trepidation; I loved Frey first two books, A Million Little Pieces and My Friend Leonard, and he was pilloried for presenting them as memoir, not fiction. For me, it was all about the writing, and Frey is a great writer. OK, he uses run-on sentences and not enough punctuation, but it works. I'm happy to say this one works, too.

I didn't know what to expect, but plunged right in to this 500 page monster; not all monsters are bad. This one is good. It's about Los Angeles, a city I know well (my hubs is retired LAPD), and Frey lived and worked here for awhile. It's not a cohesive narrative but a compilation of vignettes of several characters who have come to the city to fulfill their dreams. Frey states a lot of facts, but this is fiction, and the wise reader will remember the nudge-nudge, wink-wink disclaimer in the front of the book: Nothing in this book should be considered accurate or reliable. It's fiction, wonderful fiction.

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