Debbie Robson's Reviews > Beautiful Ruins

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
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's review
Jul 30, 2012

it was amazing
Read from July 30 to August 08, 2012

What a read! Beautiful Ruins contains so much of Hollywood – figuratively and literally. We have the third person narrative in multiple timelines. We have an excised first chapter of a biography. We have a play, a short story, a pitch, a pass that breaks a Hollywood contract and more than anything else we have an insider’s look at how a lot of business is done in tinseltown. All these different narrative forms blend to create a tale of lost love and wasted lives. (Or are they wasted? Walter also asks.) The author does a wonderful job to bring it all together with compassion yet with a sweeping dexterity.
I’m guessing from all the specific details that Walter doles out, that he has experienced the voracious, vaporous and relentless machine that is Hollywood. I love the irony and parody just below the surface. Yet when dealing with his character’s emotions - Walter is a gentle and respectful author. Life is a mess for most of us but it is still a sacred thing. A must read.
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07/30/2012 page 184
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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Steve I've been preaching the joys of Jess Walter for years. Glad to see him getting his due here. He's such a versatile and talented writer. That excised first chapter you mentioned is a good case in point, don't you think?

Debbie Robson Thanks Steve. I loved that first chapter. Could have read "the whole book". Walters actually answered my question first in a little video here on GR. It was very exciting!

message 3: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten Have been intending to read this for a while. Will bump it up the queue!

Debbie Robson It's well worth it!

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