Imperial Bedrooms

Imperial Bedrooms

Book - 2010
Average Rating:
9
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Bret Easton Ellis's debut, Less Than Zero, is one of the signal novels of the last thirty years, and he now follows those infamous teenagers into an even more desperate middle age.

Clay, a successful screenwriter, has returned from New York to Los Angeles to help cast his new movie, and he's soon drifting through a long-familiar circle. Blair, his former girlfriend, is married to Trent, an influential manager who's still a bisexual philanderer, and their Beverly Hills parties attract various levels of fame, fortune and power. Then there's Clay's childhood friend Julian, a recovering addict, and their old dealer, Rip, face-lifted beyond recognition and seemingly even more sinister than in his notorious past.

But Clay's own demons emerge once he meets a gorgeous young actress determined to win a role in his movie. And when his life careens completely out of control, he has no choice but to plumb the darkest recesses of his character and come to terms with his proclivity for betrayal.

A genuine literary event.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, c2010.
ISBN: 9780307266101
0307266109
Characteristics: 169 p. ;,25 cm.

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g
Gizmo_Joe
Oct 25, 2016

I always knew that novelist Ellis was a second-rate writer and this hunk of junk proves it beyond a doubt.

d
DickyMicky
Oct 25, 2016

Novelist Ellis really needs to take some serious creative writing courses - A.S.A.P.!!

r
Ranger4402
Jun 05, 2015

When I read any book I really want to enjoy it and usually do. I wanted to enjoy this book.

Unfortunately Imperial Bedrooms was a massive disappointment. A dried up wading pool in the hot summer is deeper than the characters in this train wreck.

I could not put this book down because I kept hoping and hoping the story would gain some traction and improve.

If you like stories and characters that are less than shallow then have at it. This book will please in that respect.

l
lukasevansherman
Sep 19, 2014

Does B.E.E. have to ask Elvis Costello's permission before he rips off his titles? Or is he just a cultural vampire? I suppose he felt he had to since this is a kinda sequel to his first, sensational 80s novel "Less Than Zero." Less you miss the connection (B.E.E. is nothing if not obvious), the book begins thusly "They had made a movie about us. The movie was based on a book written by someone we knew." Oh snap, he' s talking about "Less Than Zero!" Few things are more lazy than doing meta in the 00s. This is another shallow novel about shallow people being shallow (dead eyed sex, drugs, pop culture). He thinks he's a satirist, but he's not that smart or funny. Maybe he thinks by using Costello and Raymond Chandler as epigraphs, people will forgot that he has no talent. Here's a sentence that sums up this book and pretty much all of B.E.E. (he stings, but it only hurts for a minute), "we were just doing coke and watching "The Hills." You can read this book in like an hour whilst doing something else (might I suggest coke and "The Hills?"), but if you get bored, have a sip of overprice champagne every time he drops a brand name. You'll be drunk by page 50 and then won't care how crappy this book is. The worst novelist of his generation?

p
PearlyBaker
Aug 17, 2014

Um, yeah. I didn't get it. I wonder if he's worth exploring and trying to figure out. It seems doubtful, but maybe I should start with his earlier works.

d
dumbghosts
Jan 24, 2011

Bret Easton Ellis is over. The book follows his usual formula of cycles of detachment and excess with sadistic violence, but this time, the boredom of his psychopathic characters is truly boring.

s
svilenpetrov
Jan 09, 2011

One of the better books I've read last year. Nuanced and cynical, the essence of contemporary savoir-etre.

d
derekwolfgram
Nov 29, 2010

As time goes on, each new book by Bret Easton Ellis features the author's name on the cover in increasingly larger fonts while the titles get smaller and smaller. Self-reference has always been Ellis' genius, but his insular world is harder to appreciate with each new iteration. The trademark nihilism is present, as are the weird sexual kinks, the graphic violence, and the glamorous, vapid, shallow L.A. socialites. There are some passages in the story that are quite suspenseful (in case the reader misses the L.A. noir tribute to Chandler, The Long Goodbye is quoted in the epigraph), but the resolution is unsatisfying. There are flashes of storytelling brilliance, and some wicked turns of phrase, but the novel as a whole does not come together.

From the douchebag-extraordinaire jacket photo of Ellis to the claim on the flyleaf that Imperial Bedrooms is "a genuine literary event," the book is all about the packaging, not so much about the contents. Imperial Bedrooms weighs in at a scant 169 pages, which thankfully results in a quick read.

I saw Ellis do a reading in Denver a few years back, and I got my copy of American Psycho signed.
"To Derek. Best Wishes. Bret Easton Ellis." Best wishes? I could never be sure whether this was deadpan irony, shallow lack of thoughtfulness, or a genuine wish. I feel kinda the same way about Imperial Bedrooms.

l
loudem
Nov 26, 2010

What a dull book! What's going on in it?Who knows? What's it about? How cares? Who are all these persons? Like the picture on the dust cover: Bull. At least it's not a long book, that was a blessing. Skip it if you can. Any other book will be better than this piece of crap.

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