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Lush Life

3.68  ·  Rating Details  ·  9,636 Ratings  ·  1,498 Reviews
"So, what do you do?" Whenever people asked him, Eric Cash used to have a dozen answers. Artist, actor, screenwriter . . . But now he's thirty-five years old and he's still living on the Lower East Side, still in the restaurant business, still serving the people he wanted to be. What does Eric do? He manages. Not like Ike Marcus. Ike was young, good-looking, people liked
Hardcover, 464 pages
Published March 4th 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published March 2008)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dan Schwent
Jan 16, 2014 Dan Schwent rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
Bartender Eric Cash sees a coworker murdered and proves to be a poor witness. But was he really just a witness or did he shoot Ike Marcus? And if he didn't, who did?

During my second meeting with Kemper, he mentioned Richard Price being pretty good. I promptly forgot the name until a year later while I was watching The Wire, another Kemper recommendation. I found this down at the used bookstore and picked it up.

It pains me to say it, since I hold Kemper and The Wire in high regard, but I wasn't h
Paul Bryant
Aug 21, 2009 Paul Bryant rated it really liked it
1) Police prodecurals are not thrillers or mysteries or detective stories, they're grind-em-out painful-detail-by-painful-detail hour-by-hour no-heroes no-feel-good gloomfests. Looking at the one and two star reviews on Bookface for Lush Life, it seems perhaps people are reading Lush Life for the wrong reasons. Ain't going to be any epiphanies here, no triumph, no resolution, if the bad guys are ever caught, which is dubious, it'll probably be through some banal circumstance, some by-the-book le ...more
Will Byrnes
Dec 02, 2015 Will Byrnes rated it really liked it
Set in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Lush Life shows a place that is rich in all sorts of humanity. The crime is a meaningless street homicide, but Price uses the event as a McGuffin for painting a portrait of a piece of New York, a vision of a neighborhood in transition, complete with city projects and gentrifying real estate, cops, robbers and residents, the way things are, politically. There is a lot going on here. Price is a veteran of The Wire and if this work seems like the sort of ensemble ...more
Oct 11, 2011 Greg rated it liked it
There is a scene in the middle of Lush Life where the New York Post runs a story about one of the characters, a mid-thirties LES wanna-be someone but never will be anyone (or an aging failed hipster); the story is page three, pretty prominent placement usually reserved for stories like "Jacko has gone Wacko". Within hours of this story hitting the New York Post every slimy greasy hipster of the Rivington St. area has seen this story and turns this guy into a social pariah. Wanna be actors and fi ...more
May 06, 2008 Jessica rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: young, attractive LES artistes with hell of money, who love the wire
Recommended to Jessica by: mom; times book review
Man, I am so over New York City. Seriously. I want to pack it all up and move to Berlin.... too bad I don't know any German.

Seriously, this place sucks.

That's about all I got out of this book: a heightened sense of dissatisfaction and frustration with my environment. As mentioned below, I never cared at all about any of the characters, and there didn't seem to be much of a point to the plot or anything that anyone did the whole time. I guess I mildly enjoyed it, in a bored kind of way. It was fu
Jul 31, 2016 Perry rated it liked it
Lush Lifeless

I bought this book a few months back after belatedly binge watching The Wire. My thought was that Price, who wrote some of the episodes, might have captured that magic here.

Unfortunately, and I'm being as frank as I can: though I read this a few months ago, I do not remember a character in this book or the particulars or the outcome. Yet, I do remember that I found it as flat as a day old fountain drink and that I looked forward to the ending because I'd lost all desire to read a
Sep 24, 2011 Yulia marked it as left-unfinished
Shelves: criminal-intent
Lazily written, this book may well make for a good movie one day, but it seems Price has spent too much time writing TV scripts, he's forgotten how to write prose (of course, I've not read anything else of his, so perhaps he never knew). No, lists of people, objects, sights, and neighborhoods can't substitute for atmosphere, perception, and insight. It's insulting to be given his mental scraps. I'm not starving here. I'll meet you on DVD.
Oh man, I've been waiting to read this since it was released last year. Price at his best and a must-read for anyone with any kind of relationship to New York City. A song of the contemporary Lower East Side constructed around an essentially random murder that here is spun out (very The Wire–like) so that we meet and know the entire cast of characters: the waiter-slash-artist-slash-whatever young, vibrant, neo-bohemian, white victim; the waiter-slash-writer not-so-young, stuck, white witness; th ...more
K.D. Absolutely
Mar 21, 2011 K.D. Absolutely rated it it was ok
Recommended to K.D. by: Barack Obama
Shelves: guy-lit
The two faces of New York Lower East Sides: one a high-priced bohemia and the other a home to hardship, its residents pushed to the edges of their time-honored turf.

Eric Cash is one of those residents. He has been a bartender for 8 years and dreams of becoming an actor or a writer or a restaurateur. He has been dreaming that long – in fact for 8 years – so that he is now the oldest employee at Café Berkmann. At 32, although he is already the manager, he is bored on waiting when any of his dreams
Sep 02, 2013 Zoeytron rated it really liked it
This is a fine police procedural, chock o' block with the day-to-day ins and outs, the dos and don'ts, and the exasperating politics of law enforcement. Richard Price is right at the top of the tree in creating perfect characterizations of individuals who are far from perfect.

Matty Clark is the lead investigator of a street mugging that morphs into a shooting and results in murder. Matty is divorced and the father of two nearly grown sons. He has been far removed from their lives and is indiffer
Oct 25, 2010 Alison rated it it was amazing
Lush Life is a complex, gritty crime novel that also happens to be a haunting, anxious tale of gentrification, community and fatherhood, wrapped around a poison-pen love letter to the Lower East Side. Ignoring any one of those facets would miss the nuanced big picture thing that Price has going on here, but Lush Life doesn't require all that much digging and scratching on the reader's end. It's a visceral, immediate read. Don't be surprised if you can't put it down.

Mike Lindgren
Oct 27, 2010 Mike Lindgren rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Richard Price’s novel Lush Life is a messy brawl of a crime story; diffuse, overlong, ambiguous and vexing, the book is, in short, a perfect fictional mirror for contemporary New York City. Price’s story deals with the fallout of a random murder on the Lower East Side: Two young black men from the nearby projects attempt a stickup of three barhopping hipsters, which goes awry when one of the victims resists in a burst of misplaced bravado. The ensuing investigation blows a huge hole in the lives ...more
Aug 10, 2016 RB rated it really liked it
This is a 4.5 book, rounded down to a 4, no idea why . . .

If you are looking for a who-donut or a locked-room mystery or some fast paced, high stakes crime hunt, look elsewhere, for Richard Price's "Lush Life" is a gigantic work yet so slim. Let me explain. The setup has us meeting the killer pretty much in the first 30 pages and we follow the police, the witnesses, the family of the victim, and all the parties involved as they find their lives re-written by a rather small crime (no big conspira
Balzac è il nome che salta fuori più spesso, il riferimento più diretto che s’incontra leggendo i critici che si sono occupati di questo romanzo: per la vastità dell’opera, l’ampiezza e il rigoglio dell’umanità coinvolta, ma soprattutto, per la capacità di descrizione e analisi di luoghi, gesti, comportamenti, azioni, e reazioni.

Il Lower East Side di New York all’inizio del Terzo Millennio diventa paradigma di una condizione e di un’umanità molto più vasta di quella che
Brian Stillman
Mar 11, 2008 Brian Stillman rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2008
Lush Life by Richard Price is a really good book and it might even be a great book. It hits the pre-reqs one after another: the major players seem fully rounded people, the dialogue seems like words real folk might speak, the description of action and place verges on poetry, and the actual happenings are interesting, engaging, and worthy of the reader plowing forward, real world ignored, but the book has one failure that keeps on brewing since I read the last page.

With one exception the women ch
Patrick Brown
Dec 15, 2007 Patrick Brown rated it it was ok
I had high hopes for this book. I really only know Price's work from films (Clockers, Life Lessons (which is the first part of New York Stories)) and TV (The Wire), but I was looking forward to reading a book of his. I got a galley of this one (due out in March) and figured I'd give it a shot.

Lush Life follows several characters around the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the wake of a murder. The characters are well drawn and three dimensional, even some of the minor characters (I'm thinking of
Aug 26, 2015 Melissa rated it really liked it
A thought that's been giving me great joy lately is this: there are still some Richard Price books out there that I haven't read. Now the key is going to be not to read them all too quickly. I need to pace myself for the rest of my life with this guy.
Aug 01, 2016 Susan rated it it was amazing
As one of the writers for the highly acclaimed HBO series "The Wire," Price shared a 2007 Edgar Award. Because I love that series and anything I've read by others of its writers -- David Simon, Dennis Lehane, George Pelecanos -- I began this book figuring I would love it, too.

Price does not disappoint.

"Lush Life" takes place over about 10 intense days following a robbery-gone-wrong murder on Manhattan's Lower East Side. Price immerses readers in all the characters' points of view in great depth
Beth F.
I couldn't put this down and really wish I'd read it over a weekend instead of the middle of the week because I kept thinking about it during work, it was that addictive!

So why only 3 stars? Here's the breakdown:

--Excellent dialogue, ****
--Addictiveness, ****

--I understand the lack of decent prose, the author is a successful writer of screenplays. And if this is ever adapted to the silver screen I'md so there. **
--And for a little something I call "the New York Factor", **

On several occasions, i
Jan 20, 2011 Steve rated it liked it
Lush Life has prompted a debate I’m now having with myself. How much crime drama should I include in my diet? Unfortunately, I read this one fast on the heels of David Simon’s great non-fictional account, Homicide. Just about anything would suffer in comparison with that. Simon had great character profiles, crisp language, and well-paced plots. With Price, the dialog was good and the plot was above average, but the characters weren’t as vivid. Maybe Simon’s advantage was that truth really can be ...more
Apr 20, 2008 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Yet another pitch-perfect take on urban crime, policing, and city life by Richard Price. Set on the Lower East Side of Manhattan post-9/11, this story centers on the shooting death of a young white hipster who had just started working at a young white hipster restaurant in the neighborhood, and the subsequent police investigation. At first the investigation centers on one of the two other white hipster guys accompanying the victim that night, but finding the answer to what happened turns out to ...more
Mientras Leo
Aug 19, 2016 Mientras Leo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Muy bueno, un caso realista que explora las repercusiones de un asesinato y da a la investigación el protagonismo. Lo mejor son los diálogos, magníficos
Sep 10, 2010 Harold rated it liked it
Shelves: noir
Three stars. A solid good. I deducted a star for too much filler. This book was 455 pages and at times would lose my attention - I had to concentrate to stay aboard. In over 1200 pages of The Count of Monte Cristo, for example, I never once felt like that. A little judicious editing would probably have done the trick for me and made it into 4 stars rather than 3. That having been said - Lush Life was good police stuff and at some point in the future I’ll try another of Richard Price’s novels.
Nov 08, 2009 Seán rated it really liked it
I love Richard Price's ear for dialogue, how he can recreate with precision the way an aging LES hipster or cop from New Dorp Beach would verbally navigate a murder scene or essay a response to a tabloid hack's query. Plus, the comic moments are short and staccato just like how in real life funny things tend to pop out of the ordinary and then quickly die away.
Ubik 2.0
Oct 27, 2012 Ubik 2.0 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
…immaginando quanto sarebbe stata più facile la sua vita se quel maledetto ragazzo si fosse fatto uccidere tre isolati più a sud, nel quinto distretto”

"La vita facile" è un romanzo di impianto poliziesco, scritto però da un autore non "di genere"; in questo senso, e per l'ambientazione interamente newyorkese, può essere avvicinato a "Il falò delle vanità", anche se non ha certamente lo spessore narrativo e il respiro corale del capolavoro di Tom Wolfe.

Il punto di forza dell'opera di Price sta in
Mar 21, 2008 David rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of TV's "Law & Order" franchise
Shelves: read-in-2008
"Lush Life" received unprecedented exposure and extravagantly positive reviews in The New York Times. It began on March 2nd with a highly flattering portrait of the author by Charles McGrath. On March 4th, Michiko Kakutani weighed in with a glowing endorsement ("a dazzling prose movie of a novel.") Then - amazingly - a second, equally ebullient, review by Walter Kirn in the Sunday Books section on March 16th. So many column inches for just one book - somewhere the debut novelists whose efforts d ...more
Jun 14, 2009 Mark rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, mystery

Richard Price is the kind of author who should put to an end any further false distinction between "superior" and "inferior" genres of writing.

He lives in the world of police, urban landscapes and crime, but his writing -- the pacing, dialogue, human subtlety, ear for argot, and plotting -- make him as good a writer as there is out there.

In "Lush Life," he spins the tale of a fairly typical big city shooting death, showing in the lives of police, perpetrators, witnesses and victims that there i
Mar 18, 2008 Frederick marked it as to-read
Shelves: price-richard
I snapped this up as soon as I saw it in the store. Richard Price has interested me ever since my brother said I should read THE WANDERERS, back when it was a paperback on the drugstore rack. My brother championed three writers in my youth: Kurt Vonnegut, Jean Shepherd and Richard Price. Not a bad big brother to have, eh?
Jul 24, 2009 Pat rated it really liked it
A random murder provides the incident around which the story revolves. Price has set this novel in the lower east side. The crime is only the bones; the people, the place, the dialogue and language are the story.
Aug 15, 2009 Lauren rated it really liked it
Everybody says this but...Richard Price has an almost virtuosic understanding of dialogue and, of course, an incredibly sophisticated understanding of plotting and suspense. Such a fan of his!
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

A self-described "middle class Jewish kid," Price grew up in a housing project in the northeast Bronx. Today, he lives in New York City with his family.

Price graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1967 and obtained a BA from Cornell University and an MFA from C
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“falafel joint, jazz joint, gyro joint, corner. Schoolyard, creperie, realtor, corner. Tenement, tenement, tenement museum, corner. Pink Pony, Blind Tiger, muffin boutique, corner. Sex shop, tea shop, synagogue, corner. Bollywood, Buddha, botanica, corner. Leather outlet, leather outlet, leather outlet, corner. Bar, school, bar, school. People's Park, corner. Tyson mural, Celia Cruz mural, Ladi Di mural, corner. Bling shop, barbershop, car service corner.” 13 likes
“bathroom, wrapped a towel” 0 likes
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