City on FireBook - 2015
A big-hearted, boundary-vaulting novel that heralds a remarkable new talent: set in 1970s New York, it is a story outsized in its generosity, warmth, and ambition, its deep feeling for its characters, and its exuberant imagination.
The individuals who live within this extraordinary first novel are: Regan and William Hamilton-Sweeney, estranged heirs to one of the city's largest fortunes; Keith and Mercer, the men who, for better or worse, love them; Charlie and Samantha, two suburban teenagers seduced by downtown's punk scene; an obsessive magazine reporter; his idealistic neighbor; and the detective trying to figure out what any of them have to do with a shooting in Central Park. Their entangled relationships--which stretch from post-Vietnam youth culture to the fiscal crisis, from small-town Georgia to greater L.A.--open up the loneliest-seeming corners of the crowded city. And when the infamous blackout of July 13th, 1977 plunges this world into darkness, each of these lives will be changed forever. A novel about love and betrayal and forgiveness, about art and truth and rock'n'roll, about how the people closest to us are sometimes the hardest to reach--about what it means to be human.
From the critics
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“But I guess what I would want to leave each of you with finally -- tender some Evidence of, against a life's worth of signs to the contrary -- comes down simply to this: You are infinite. I see you. You are not alone.”
“this is what happens to people when they spend their entire life inside books + never come out: real life starts to grate by comparison.”
“I don't think you can really change anything unless you're willing to say yes.”
“And she learned that you couldn’t stockpile anything that mattered, really. Feelings, people, songs, sex, fireworks: they existed only in time, and when it was over, so were they.”
“The reason we can say anything we want in America is that we know it makes no difference.”
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