Less Than Zero

November 30, 2013 - Comment

Set in Los Angeles in the early 1980’s, this coolly mesmerizing novel is a raw, powerful portrait of a lost generation who have experienced sex, drugs, and disaffection at too early an age, in a world shaped by casual nihilism, passivity, and too much money a place devoid of feeling or hope. Clay comes home

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Set in Los Angeles in the early 1980’s, this coolly mesmerizing novel is a raw, powerful portrait of a lost generation who have experienced sex, drugs, and disaffection at too early an age, in a world shaped by casual nihilism, passivity, and too much money a place devoid of feeling or hope.

Clay comes home for Christmas vacation from his Eastern college and re-enters a landscape of limitless privilege and absolute moral entropy, where everyone drives Porches, dines at Spago, and snorts mountains of cocaine. He tries to renew feelings for his girlfriend, Blair, and for his best friend from high school, Julian, who is careering into hustling and heroin. Clay’s holiday turns into a dizzying spiral of desperation that takes him through the relentless parties in glitzy mansions, seedy bars, and underground rock clubs and also into the seamy world of L.A. after dark.

Comments

erica "ejs192" says:

“The Catcher in the Rye” on crack. literally. This novel – written and set in Los Angeles in the 1980’s, so be prepared not to understand many of the pop-culture references if you’re much younger than 30 – details four weeks in the life of eighteen-year-old Clay, who returns home from college halfway through freshman year for a month-long Christmas vacation. He spends most of his time hanging out with his friends from high school, going to bars and nightclubs, having sex, and doing drugs.

Dark Mechanicus JSG "Black Ops Teep" says:

Go West, young Man. Or, “Westward, Ho” So 18-year old Clay comes home to Los Angeles from college in woodsy New Hampshire for Christmas Break and very rapidly resumes LA cruising altitude: partying, booze, getting a tan, partying, seeing all the hot bands making the rounds at clubs-of-the-moment like the Roxy or The Edge, more partying, checking out movies in Westwood blitzed out of his mind, cruising around LA, watching bootleg Mexican snuff porn (featuring underage victims & chainsaws and wire hangers),But I’m getting ahead of myself.Bret Easton Ellis’s “Less than Zero” is a fine little primer on how the Rich & Famous live and die in LA, with Clay as our Virgil in this descent into a 1980’s Dante’s Inferno peopled by the Lithium-addled (but thin, baby, thin! and tan! and loaded! filthy stinking rich, Maserati country baby!)Walking Dead. Tunes, by the way, courtesy of Duran Duran and Psychedelic Furrs.He goes to lots of parties: celebrity parties, pre-movie deal parties at Spago with…

Kirsten Chance says:

Drains you dry Probably my fav book by Ellis seeing as I felt so utterly empty inside after finishing it. These characters Blair, Julian and friends have got to be the most shallow and unfeeling people I’ve ever read. Sure, Bateman in “A. Psycho” was materialistic but he was insane unlike these kids who’re supposedly NORMAL teenagers!! If this is what the rich life in L.A. is all about than I’ll be certain to never visit. But I am so sick of hearing people say this was a boring story and don’t feel sorry for these kids just because they’re spoiled and rich! Can we honestly say we wouldn’t be as empty if we lived the way they did with only cocaine and meaningless sex to entertain us? Ellis is brilliant in depicting the lives of materialistic, spoiled brats having to live without love and emotional security. If you’re looking for a novel to leave you feeling hollow and disturbed emotionally, I highly reccommend this. It gives the word ‘dreary’ a whole new meaning.

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