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Article

Mall

Posted on

Mall

type:
Book
Current Status:
In Season
author:
63866
genre:
Fiction

We gave it a B+

Suburban hell, anyone? Writers like A.M. Homes, painters like Eric Fischl, and movies like Happiness and American Beauty have mined the territory before. But Eric Bogosian owns the private-infernos-under-placid-surfaces franchise. In plays (Talk Radio) and performance pieces (Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll), he’s conjured up muttering, raving, and gibbering characters who represent every slice of desperate contemporary life. And in his first novel he swiftly etches a Peeping Tom businessman, sullenly alienated teenagers, a young housewife in thrall to her relentless appetites, a voodoo-spooked Haitian security guard, and, most ominously, a young drug addict with an arsenal, all converging one night on a suburban mall. The detail is corrosively precise, and the merciless satirical vision takes you deep into the dark heart of the American dream. But the plot gets lost there, leaving the characters with nothing to act out but the implausible. B+

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