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Empire of Light
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Empire of Light

3.6 of 5 stars 3.60  ·  rating details  ·  20 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Jason Tisse is in over his head. As a young black cinematography student at LA's notoriously tough American Film Institute, he's got the vision, but not the balls to battle the ruthlessness that is Hollywood. After a failed year at AFI, which includes nearly electrocuting a fellow classmate, Jason embarks on a trip to Europe to hunt down the works of his favorite painter. ...more
Paperback, 326 pages
Published September 27th 2011 by Simon and Fig (first published September 1st 2011)
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Lucie Simone
This book is one madcap ride through the world of film, art, and magic as seen through the eyes of Jason Tisse, a black cinematography student who embarks on a tour of Europe to follow in the footsteps of his master teacher, baroque artist Caravaggio. Gifted with an enchanted vintage camera, Jason unwittingly unleashes all the drama, sex, violence and humor depicted on the canvases of his idol, Caravaggio, and sets off on a journey of self-discovery that leads him from the churches of Rome to th ...more
I must admit--I know this author. I must admit further: I know this city where we grew up, that fills the speech of the main character with authenticity in a magical-realist plot. There's something deeply satisfying about the high and low culture, and even, high and low diction--the combination of Caravaggio and Stan Lee, and of the serious search for love and meaning, salted with self-deprecating, earthy asides. It's also satisfyingly paced and brilliantly structured--lots of explosions! I don' ...more
Steve Grantz
Trippy journey of self discovery peppered with art history and a sprinkle of Italian cuisine.

Gregory Earls is a master of comic metaphor and I laughed out loud a good dozen times during the course of reading the book.
I really enjoyed this one. The story was put together very well and flowed without any slow spots. I was very intrigued by the power of the camera in the story and what was going to happen next. It was artsy enough to really get the creative side of my brain going, always a plus.
Nuno Furtado
Awesomely written. After reading it you are left with a sense of bliss that can only be understood at the end.

The characters and the voyage detailed will make you want to pick up a camera and just start shooting and capturing the light.

a must read
Wildly funny and entertaining. Great book about a young mans journey through Italy and film school.
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