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The Informers

3.37  ·  Rating details ·  19,250 ratings  ·  579 reviews
Their voices enfold us as seamlessly as those of DJs heard over a car radio. The characters go to the same schools. They eat at the same restaurants. They have sex with the same boys and girls. They buy from the same dealers. Fusing voices into an intense, impressionistic narrative that blurs genders, generations and even identities, these stories capture the lives of a gr ...more
Paperback, 262 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Pan Macmillan (first published July 26th 1994)
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Average rating 3.37  · 
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 ·  19,250 ratings  ·  579 reviews

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Feb 10, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who was psycho-lite
Ah Bret, I loved you so, so long ago. For anyone who has not had the mixture of pleasure, horror, disgust and loathing which is generated by the reading of American Psycho, then you should probably start here to ease your way into the dismissive, violent and destructive world which Ellis describes. I read American Psycho in one long teenage school day (under desks during class/ behind a wall at break/ on the bus home) and was amazed that this man was actually a fully functioning author and not a ...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

If you are familiar with Brett Easton Ellis, you are already aware that he is the one who gave us the opulence and overindulgences of youth like what can be found in . . . .

But what if he mixed that sort of tale with a little bit of . . . . .

Ummmmmmmm . . . .

It’s the end of summer, 1982. Days are spent poolside in a hazy state of inebriation while movies play on the Betamax and the earworm of “Our Love’s In Jeopardy” bur
May 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
the way these short stories intertwine with one another is purely brilliant. i know a lot of people tend to not enjoy ellis' style of writing, but i think that the joy in his writing is all within the way everything is so disconnected and connected, all at the same time.

no other author can write end on end about seemingly useless facts, and still have use for them.

i know this sounds extremely contradicting, but he does the same thing throughout his other writings.

american psycho is a good examp
Dec 03, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This isn't a novel. It's a looooooooooosely connected collection of short stories. More recent editions of The Informers now acknowledge this. When I first read the book in 1994, not knowing this fact threw me off completely. So, now I'm re-reading it because I hear it's being turned into a movie. It will be interesting to see what comes of that.

Certainly The Informers is not Ellis's best work and not a place to start if you're new to his writing. A chronological reading of his work is my sugge
Neil Walker
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bret Easton Ellis is of my biggest influences as an author and while this book isn’t quite on a level with the exceptional American Psycho, which is probably his masterpiece, it is still excellent and well worth reading.

The way Bret Easton Ellis captures the mindset of a certain element of society in the 1980s and pushes it to it’s logical conclusion is very much something I was trying to emulate in Drug Gang, with my chosen time period being the early 2000s.

This collection of stories set in Los
Katie Marquette
Jul 23, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Sure, it looks entertaining. But, I promise you, by the time you get to the thirtieth page you'll start flipping through the pages, just to see if the 'might as well kill ourselves now' tone dies down a little as the book goes on. Surprise! It doesn't. An endless, painful, LONG look at the lives of some very spoiled, very addicted teenagers and their over medicated, surgically altered parents. It's LA at it's worst: and I'm having trouble believing that people this heartless even exist, but that ...more
May 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lit, short-stories
Style over substance perhaps, but there's so much style that there's still a lot of substance for those paying attention.

This one was a re-read. I only have 700 books I haven't opened yet but I just had to come back to this one. NaNoWriMo is coming up and I've had an idea running around my mind for years that could use a structure similar to this one. So I combined research with pleasure and got stuck in to the Ellis novel that I remembered most fondly from a decade ago. Amazingly it was even be
Benjamin Stahl
Feb 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: second-reading

While revisiting Ellis’s debatable "best work", American Psycho, I found myself slightly disappointed.

On first reading it, I was in a particularly bitter frame of mind where the violence and decadence appealed to me. Reading it again years later, I guess I wasn’t so angry with life, and so I found less enjoyment with Bateman’s horrific lifestyle. I still gave it four stars and will always respect the novel - (sick and disturbing as it is) - but I was also less forgiving of the constant (though
Jan 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
— "Imagine a blind person dreaming," she says. "You can't understand, you can't comprehend the pain." —

A gathering of thirteen loosely interrelated short stories set primarily in 1980s Los Angeles. Drugs, expensive cars, designer clothes, and everyone unsuccessfully navigating and relating to love and lovers and one-night lubricated stands and friends and family and whatever else there might be out there.

For me, it's solely about the first-person present tense all hard angles and go and fuck you
Jun 05, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Joe woke up and ordered a cheese omelet only to stare at it the entire time, confused about why he ordered it in the first place when he wasn't hungry, then he went to the movies but he didn't really pay attention to the first half of it, then this goth girl was looking at him funny and he really wanted to fuck her but doesn't, and he decided to visit a friend's house and so he drove there in his super expensive sports car and drank beer and afterward he went to a club and picked up a valley gir ...more
Evelyn  Rees
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I hate Bret Easton Ellis and his books for a number of reasons. I will list those reasons now.
- it's simply too ironic that most people find him style over substance.
- he makes writing seem like the easiest thing in the world.
- the most interesting part of his books are the parts that he doesn't include.
- for some reason I keep reading him
- for some even weirder reason I love everything of his that I read.
If this review doesn't make sense it's because Bret Easton Ellis inspired it.

John Raptor
Feb 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
California is sunny and beautiful but Ellis digs up the emptiness and evil that lies beneath the glamorous surface. Love these short stories. Sad, disturbing, and darkly humorous. If it wasn't for touches of dark humor, Ellis' books would be too empty to handle. ...more
Steven Godin
Bret Easton Ellis is a writer I feel gets his fair share of criticism, sometimes I would agree, most of the time I wouldn't, he can write, no doubts about it. His work may have a small band of hardcore fans, whilst for others they just can't work him out. American Psycho is one of my favourite novels, it's misinterpreted as a horrible, disturbing, empty and pointless novel. He deserves more credit, everything in this novel has a point, despite it's nihilistic themes. The Informers picks off mome ...more
Nov 20, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fictive
I love B.E.E. because of his unerring talent for creating the best kind of repulsed fascination. (Or fascinating revulsion.) Also, he has the best moments. This one occurs early on in the collection, and was probably the place that hooked me:

"The door opens. It's a small bathroom and Raymond is siting on the toilet, the lid closed, beginning to cry again, his face and eyes red and wet. I am so surprised by Raymond's emotion that I lean against the door and just stare, watching him bunch his hand
Dani Dányi
Aug 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure this was an actual novel, it's more like a bunch of short stories with a lot of plot and character overlap, which is weird in a way, because I was expecting short stories straight but then there's this inward spiraling that only exacerbates the fact that it's often hard to tell who's who exactly, though through no fault of the reader, it's mostly the characters who are too disoriented to have clear ideas of who they are. Anyway, we know it's not East Coast but L.A. and environs, and ...more
Sean Blake
Aug 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Ellis is a great writer when it comes to observing the bland superficiality of our modern society, savagely satirical depictions of capitalist America and its inhabitants.

One of my favourite short story collections from a master writer.
Definitely not a place to start with Bret Easton Ellis.
Jacob Overmark
We all know it.

They are out there, the hip ones, the rich ones, the drug addicts and the perverts.
The young and not so young well tanned on high doses of alcohol and prescription and def. non-prescription drugs are just soooo bored - and boring.

Nevertheless, once again Bret Easton Ellis feels a calling to describe them all in detail.

Whereas American Psycho was a wake-up call, pointing at the utter restlessness of a twisted brain leading to - for lack of better words - nihilistic behavior in ext
Jul 05, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

Well, this is it. The first book so bad and uninteresting that I actually put it down before I finished it. Oddly enough, I got almost 2/3 through it! But last night I was just DONE. Started skimming so much and then downright paging through to other chapters, then to the end, then said "enough!"

It start off THAT bad which is why I got so far in. But the supposedly connected series of short stories were just too damn confusing. I sent most of each chapter trying to remember how each person w
Oct 05, 2011 rated it it was ok
I don’t know why I keep coming back to Bret Easton Ellis, I never seem to overly enjoy his vacuous characters but something keeps drawing me back. The Informers is my forth Ellis book and this one is a collection of short stories that ultimately link together to make an overall story. Think Crash (the movie) but with shallow characters. The Informers follow the lives of several interconnected characters, they all eat at the same places; sleep with the same people and pretty much act like each ot ...more
Jan 25, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
LA's vapid hedonisim is chronicled in thirteen narratives, separate yet melding into an indistinct voice that is languidly restless, unfocused, indifferent, and rambling in a drug-induced haze; friends, lovers, spouses merit the same mention, often less favourable, as Porches, Mercedes Benzes, Jaguars, and personal financial worth. Amidst the blase disregard of relationships for transient gratification, the desire for genuine connection is thinly veiled; the son who is affected enough to disappr ...more
Pretty disappointing. My fourth BEE novel, and definitely the worst one yet. This was the first book published after American Psycho and that must have drained him, because this is nowhere near his normal standards. Definitely not a good example of Ellis at his top form. Some of the chapters were okay, some were damn right awful; the vampires chapter, for example, can just have a big 1 star label slapped onto it. There were, that I could see, two references to his previous books though. There wa ...more
Jul 05, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-fiction
This is a pickle to review, but fortunately I like pickles.

First, my review is based off of my feeling toward Ellis in general. I like him, but beyond that, this would be a very strange text to start with, were it to be the first of his work you'd encounter.

The key thing is that it's packaged as a novel. Hell, Goodreads even claims it's a novel. It is however, disconnected vignettes that require a check of the book's wiki page to unsnarl. Wikipedia, by the by, seems to fall strongly on the other
Aug 25, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Boring. Very boring. Extremely boring. I know that's the point when Ellis is writing about rich people, but it pretty much felt like I was reading the parts of Less Than Zero that ended up on the cutting room floor. About 70% there was some action, but it didn't really seem to fit the rest of the story, and by then I was just trying to finish it so I could get on to the next book. If you want to read about boring spoiled rich people, read American Psycho. If you want to read about boring spoiled ...more
Chrysa Chouliara
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ellis here interweaves the lives of a families in los angeles, pushing further than he had in rules of attraction or less than zero but pumping the brakes a little on the extended hyper violence of american psycho (though there is some of that too). this isn't really a collection of short stories, though it's kind of presented as one. it's about film executives and bratty kids and vampires and broken marriages and rock stars all nonlinear but thematic in its mapping the detachment from one group ...more
Dec 05, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Empty is as empty does--

As I thought about what made this story of Brett Easton Ellis' so awful compared to his more recognized 'American Psycho' (thank you Christian Bale!) or even more related, 'Less Than Zero'. I've only been able to arrive at the following conclusion. Unlike those other works, in very few places in 'The Informers' does one actually get a vantage point that provides a narrative contrast or "space" that allows the reader to really feel the banality of waste, selfishness, and l
This is a great book about moral bankruptcy in the middle of glitzy LA. I like this book because his writing contains loose affiliations of the different characters in the book. The first 9 chapters were great but the last 4 were not great.

Each chapter has a different character narrating it and is loosely connected to the other chapter but at its heart each character is alone. The characters have to take drugs/alcohol just try to relate to each other shows you the depth of their isolation. There
Jun 19, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This story lacks subject. It doesn't have any kind of meaning. Vampires pop up and make racist jokes and have sex, then kill their sex partners. Guys and girls who are all uniformly rich, drug-addicted, bird-brained, big fans of sunglasses, blond, tanned, gorgeous shuffle around doing nothing, perhaps to portray the meaninglessness of life. The plot is horrible. To be honest, it doesn't seem to really have a plot. It's really more a series of horrible short stories connected only by the chracter ...more
Kelly Wondracek
Decent, but my least favorite BEE books so far. I wish there had been some distinction, either on the cover or the chapter titles, that these were more themed short stories rather than a linear novel. I would have read it differently and maybe spent less time trying to figure out if the narrators had changed, if there were recurring, if the characters were interwoven, etc.

There were some great descriptions and maybe one chapter that pulled some emotional strings for me, but overall it was hard
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Bret Easton Ellis is an American author. He is considered to be one of the major Generation X authors and was regarded as one of the so-called literary Brat Pack, which also included Tama Janowitz and Jay McInerney. He has called himself a moralist, although he has often been pegged as a nihilist. His characters are generally young vacuous people, who are aware of their depravity but choose to enj ...more

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