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Loisaida -- A New York Story

3.98  ·  Rating Details  ·  52 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
One evening, in a neighborhood on the brink, boy meets girl. If only they'd gone home together, they might both still be alive. The core of this gritty, only in New York-story was inspired by real events - a beautiful, aspiring dancer slain. The psychotic roommate has confessed, but a dilettante actor-turned-journalist thinks there's more to it and investigates. Welcome to ...more
Paperback, Trade Paperback, 304 pages
Published October 2nd 2010 by Caradeloca Press (first published July 16th 2010)
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I'll start by saying that I don't think that this is a novel that will appeal to everyone. It did however tick many of the boxes that I look for in a book these days. It's dark and gritty with complex and vivid characters.

It is to some extent a murder mystery, but it is so much more, the underbelly of New York in the late 1980's with it's sleaze and violence, people struggling to make a living, connect and not be alone.

The story is played out from multiple points of view which may not appeal to
Neil Schiller
Apr 15, 2011 Neil Schiller rated it it was amazing
In a moment, I'm going to say a couple of things about this book that you may or may not believe. It doesn't matter. I'm going to say them anyway because I'm convinced they are true. We'll get to that though...

I initially bought this book as a present for someone else. I had no intention of reading it because I thought it was simply a bargain price thriller. Having poked around the Amazon forums for a few months, however, I started to see references to Loisaida which made me think that, actually
Jason Pettus
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography []. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally.)

This is one of those gritty urban Social Realist dramas with a liberal bent that I'm never quite sure what to do with; for although I acknowledge that there's a large crowd out there who love this kind of work, I myself am not the biggest fan, yet don't wish people to think this book is poorly written just
Dec 07, 2011 Charlene rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I finished reading Loisaida -- A New York Story a few weeks back. Even though this book takes place prior to 9/11 I still found myself thinking about 9/11 while reading the story and I'm not sure why.

The characters and the locations seemed to jump out at me fully formed and together they seemed to define what is NY to me, not having ever been there. The different types of people, both good and bad, their styles and personalities; all are conveyed with a true, discerning eye.

I won't go into the
May 29, 2011 Irene rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
If for nothing else, read it to get a full sense of what New York City used to be (crime-ridden, grimy and immensely interesting) as opposed to the white-washed boring, gentrified piece of crap it's become. Made me nostalgic for the home I used to have.
May 27, 2011 Al rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle, read-2011
"Loisaida" can be viewed two ways. As a work of literary or general fiction, which was the authors intent, or as a mystery.

As a work of literary or general fiction, "Loisaida" is excellent. Written from the point of view of different characters and constantly switching from one character to another is an approach that can be difficult for the reader to follow, but I didn’t find this to be a problem because Stein’s characters are finely drawn when first introduced. Despite having a large cast, ke
Aug 29, 2012 Cindy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found it a little hard to get into at first with the changing voices and viewpoints - for the first few chapters it read more like a series of interlinking short stories than one coherent piece.
However, once the links between the characters became established I was completely drawn into this world of the sleazy side of New York in the 1980s.

This book seems to have gained something of a cult following, largely I think,because of the way it crosses different genres so successfully. It is essent
Sep 04, 2012 Jjump74 rated it it was amazing
I liked this book a lot and had trouble putting it down. This included reading it well into the night, before I fell asleep. This also brought with it nightmares. I don't wish to turn anyone off to this well written tome about the late's 80's east village NYC. This book is thick with character development as chapter to chapter, we switch perspectives to unravel a tragic and dark saga, filled with tragic and dark souls. The author does such a wonderful job taking you down this path, that there ar ...more
For Books' Sake
Jan 11, 2011 For Books' Sake rated it really liked it
Set in Manhattan’s Alphabet City in the late 1980s, Loisaida's plot features dubious activities from incest to cannibalism, via violence, drug abuse, sex and insanity.

In the aftermath of the Tompkins Square Park Riot, the Lower East Side is as vivid and intoxicating a character as any of the story’s other players. Police brutality, disease and addiction are everywhere, along with greed, gentrification, housing conflicts, racial and social tensions, prostitution and every other kind of vice.

James Everington
Jul 13, 2011 James Everington rated it it was amazing
A great book - and I don't mean a great, self-published cheap Kindle book, I mean a great book full-stop. The story is told from multiple perspectives and points of view, and the author has total control over all these voices. The subtitle, "A New York Story" is perfect, because the multiple voices seem like a chorus for the city. Because of these shifts in view point, the book seems initially slightly scrappy, and all over the place, but careful reading reveals every section has a part to play. ...more
Aug 04, 2015 Val rated it really liked it
The starting point for this novel is a crime, based on a real one. The crime and the victim pull the story arc together, but around that story the author has woven a picture of an area of New York and the characters who live there. It is a picture which may seem familiar even to people who have never visited the city, with its crime and grime and a vibrant life force which makes it another character in its own right.
Many characters have a voice and a viewpoint and I was impressed by the way the
Jan 19, 2014 Christoph rated it really liked it
It took me some time to get into the story and its protagonists. The chapters are very short and interwoven. Once I started to get a hang of it, the book exerted quite some pull. It is dark, it is sobering, neither a criminal novel nor a character study. The greatest achievement in my opinion is drawing the reader into the lifes of characters which have very little in common with the reader.
Melinda Clayton
Jan 15, 2011 Melinda Clayton rated it it was amazing
Wow. What a gritty, evocative story, written in a style every bit as good as Patricia Cornwell's or James Patterson's. Stein has created such multifaceted characters that even as you hate them, you root for them. This book is a masterpiece in forcing the reader to not only accept, but understand, the grey areas in life. Amazing.
Doug Bremner
Feb 08, 2012 Doug Bremner rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, read-in-2012
I actually deleted this off my kindle after the first few chapters because I found it so upsetting to read. But I later came back to it after running out of things to read. Not to be a spoiler but the book comes together in more ways than one as it progresses. Recommend.
Moxie Mezcal
Mar 08, 2011 Moxie Mezcal rated it it was amazing
A nonlinear, multi-perspectival tale of murder set amidst the backdrop of the Tompkins Square Park riot in New York's Lower East Side during the late '80s. A lyrical ode to life lived outside the mainstream.
Jun 27, 2011 Jack rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully evoked story of life and death in New York in the Eighties. I think I should have been listening to Lou Read whilst reading it.
Susan Bennett
Oct 11, 2010 Susan Bennett rated it it was amazing
Excellent. See my review at
Toby Neal
Oct 08, 2012 Toby Neal rated it it was amazing
Gritty and immersive.
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Goodreads Authors...: I'll Pay YOU to Buy My Book 6 77 Nov 22, 2013 10:00PM  
Marion’s careers have included crisis clinician, teacher, tarot card reader, grant writer and temp. Her story Pogo was published in Gordon Lish’s legendery literary magazine,The Quarterly, long, long ago. Her novel Loisaida, has gained something of a cult following, but it's a very small cult.

Marion sometimes does readings and storytelling mostly in the New York area, but if you look around you mi
More about Marion Stein...

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