The Petting Zoo
A moving, vividly rendered novel from the late author of The Basketball Diaries.
When poet, musician, and diarist Jim Carroll died in September 2009, he was putting the finishing touches on a potent work of fiction. The Petting Zoo tells the story of Billy Wolfram, an enigmatic thirty- eight-year-old artist who has become a hot star in the late-1980s New York art scene. A...more
So before anything else, let me make it clear that I'm as big a fan of Jim Carroll's The Basketball Diaries as anyone else, his 1978 memoir about growing up in '60s Manhattan as a working-class sports star, sex fiend and teenage heroin addict, which eventually led to the punk-era Jim Carroll Band that achi ...more
“The Petting Zoo” is a poet’s look back, not only at his life, but the art, celebrity, and the ideas that guided him. “The Petting Zoo” was Jim Carroll’s first and last novel, he died shortly before putting the finishing edits on the book. For those fans of Carroll’s or books with a poetic bent, “The Petting Zoo” is a must read.
Most people are aware of Jim Carroll through ...more
The book was in draft form when Jim Carroll passed away in 2009. Cassie Carter, a literary scholar, Rosemary Carroll, former wife and Paul Slovak, editor, decided to publish the book with minimal cha ...more
And is the raven friend or foe? ...more
Why is every person a walking thesaurus? Why do several different types of people consistently use the same words and turns of phrase ("propitious" turns up A LOT)? Why do the characters speak as if they are narrating their actions? (One character says that she went up to a bar and sat "slumpingly" on a stool. Really? "Slumpingly"? And in conversation?) Why does it sound like the dialogue has been translated into English via a third-rate online translator? Why, in a book about a ...more
It all began on one fateful night when Bill Wolfram, a golden boy of the modern art world, who had everything an artist could ever dream of has a rather shocking encounter with the works of famous painter Velazquez. He is suddenly thrown into d ...more
Jim Carroll was a talented writer, and I'm sure he would like to have edited this book a bit more before he regretfully passed on. I was both moved and disturbed by h ...more
When poet, musician, and diarist Jim Carroll died in September 2009, he was putting the finishing touches on a potent work of fiction. The Petting Zoo tells the story of Billy Wolfram, an enigmatic thirty- eight-year-old artist who has become a hot star in the late-1980s New York art scene. As the novel opens, Billy, after viewing a show of Velázquez paintings, is so humbled and awed by their spiritual power that he ...more
When Jim Carroll passed away on September 11, 2009, New York lost a poet and punk rocker who was famous for writing The Basketball Diaries, an autobiographical account of his drug habits as a teenage basketball star. Carroll’s diary entries were published in book form in 1978 after first appearing in The New Yorkerand inspiring a fervent readership. The cult classic was followed almost ten years later by Forced Entries: The Downtown Diaries, 1971-1973,whic ...more
But despite these things, I found myself enraptured by what's really a series of spinning monologues - digressions and investi ...more
***POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT, depending on how you define "spoiler"***
Also, let's put a moratorium on th ...more
While I did like the book I felt like there was no climax. It just went along until it ended and I did not like that.
The pace was slow and steady and seemed to be building to something wonderful, then the writing suddenly began to meander. It is almost certainly due to the fact that Jim Carroll died before doing a final edit. ...more