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Glamorama [Unknown Binding]

Bret Easton Ellis
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)

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Book Description

13 Dec 1998
A man in what is recognizably New York is drawn into a shadowy looking-glass of that society and then finds himself trapped on the other side, in a much darker place where fame and terrorism, and family and politics, are inextricably linked and sometimes indistinguishable.

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Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Picador (13 Dec 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330372084
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330372084
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 13.5 x 4.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,273,204 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Bret Easton Ellis is also the author of Less Than Zero, The Rules of Attraction, American Psycho, The Informers, Glamorama, Lunar Park and Imperial Bedrooms, and his work has been translated into twenty-seven languages. He lives in Los Angeles.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Glamorama is a satirical mass-murder opus more ambitious than Ellis's 1990 American Psycho. It starts as a spritz-of-consciousness romp about kid-club entrepreneur Victor Ward, "the It boy of the moment," an actor/model up for Flatliners II. Ellis has perfect pitch for glam-speak, and he gives nightlife the fizz, pace, and shimmer it lacks in drab reality. Anyone could cite the right celeb names and tunes; but like a rock-polishing machine, his prose gives literary sheen to fame-chasing air-kissers. He's coldly funny: when Victor's girl tries to argue him out of a break up, she angrily snorts six bumps of coke, stops, mutters, "Wrong vial," snorts four corrective doses from whatever she has in her other fist, then objects to a rival at the party wearing the same dress she's wearing.

You had to be there; Ellis makes you feel you are. But such satire is a very smart bomb targeting a very large barn. Models' status anxiety doesn't merit Ellis's Tom Wolfe-esque expertise. Glamorama gets better when Victor gets drafted into a mysterious group of model/terrorists who bomb 747s and the Ritz in Paris, wearing Kevlar-lined Armani suits. Oh, they still behave like shallow snobs, pronouncing "cool" as if it had 12 "o"s, but now when somebody swills Cristal, it's apt to be poisoned, to horrific effect, which Ellis expertly describes. His enfant-terrible debut Less Than Zero aped Joan Didion. Now Ellis has grown into a lesser Don DeLillo--and that's high praise. --Tim Appelo

Review

"Ellis is fast becoming a writer of real American genius." -"GQ"
"His best work to date....He remains a laser-precise satirist but the wit now dominates." -"Esquire" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars an original idea 26 Aug 2008
By SJSmith TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Whereas I found `American Psycho' an easy and absorbing read, I found this much harder work. Although rewarding in the end it took a while to get into. The part on the cruise ship became confusing for me and I was uncertain at times when we were focusing on a real plot or not. I enjoyed the concept of the camera crew, always having your life in the spot life etc but then I felt it lost something. If you don't reflect too much and try to analyse as you are reading it then this is a great read. I found myself trying to link characters together and once all the pieces of the jigsaw started to fall into place it was as if one of them wasn't quite right and you had to start all over again. However, it is a clever thriller and you never know which character to trust. Your ideas are continually blown to pieces as another piece of the puzzle is unravelled.

I loved the chapters going down in number, like a countdown. But a countdown to what exactly? A new script, a new scene, a new conspiracy? Both clever and intriguing to read this novel rather surprisingly sucked me in and even though at times I didn't have the foggiest idea what was going on, I was in the full long journey. It's difficult to work out Victor with his change of surnames - can we change our identity so easily and become someone different? Or is it something new to hide behind, to prevent us from having to reveal what lurks underneath the skin? Bret Easton Ellis takes celebrity culture and slowly picks away at it to let us see what exactly goes on behind the images we see on screen and in print.

I've had this book lounging on my shelves for quite a few years now, (6 to be exact) and I finally decided it needed to be read. I wish I'd read it sooner!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a hyperreal blur set in an artificial nightmare 30 Mar 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Glamorama is essentially two books.
The first is an extremely wry observation of an extreme celebrity culture as witnessed and lived through the eyes of the "it" boy of the 90s. It is really funny and satirical and highlights the mundanity, triviality, artificiality of the culture in which he lives, how the other half lives.
At first this is exciting, and you really want to be there, but even reading about it eventually becomes mundane, becomes boring and even the reader is looking for that spark that will add a bit of something more to the experience of reading the story, to the experience of being Victor Ward, of going through the motions, of being a large, glossy fry in a world which is larger and glossier than life.
The reader's relationship with the story falls in line with Victor's relationship with his life in that you are crying out desparately, wanting something big to happen.
Victor's is a world of celebrity culture that does not exist to a mass market except as a series of mass media images. Glamorama actually puts us into his world amongst the camera crews and expensive stage sets, amongst writers and producers, within a story that is story-boarded and directed. In Victor's world these scripts are still read and the characters still take their cues, but it is when the characters stray from the scripts that the surprises reveal themselves. Victor's perspective allows us to see a world that occurs around the cameras, off-stage, in the camera's periphery.
Glamorama becomes its second part just as I thought I could take no more.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Difficult but stick with it 29 Jun 2010
Format:Paperback
I will be brief.
I would consider myself to be an 'above-average' reader and I found this book quite difficult to read. The plot bounces around a bit and the pages of dialogue did not help my understanding. That said I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Having read American Psycho first I knew what I was letting myself in for in terms of following the plot.
In short, Glamorama is American Psycho meets Zoolander. A brilliant read but not Ellis's best.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars an original idea 26 Aug 2008
By SJSmith TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Whereas I found `American Psycho' an easy and absorbing read, I found this much harder work. Although rewarding in the end it took a while to get into. The part on the cruise ship became confusing for me and I was uncertain at times when we were focusing on a real plot or not. I enjoyed the concept of the camera crew, always having your life in the spot life etc but then I felt it lost something. If you don't reflect too much and try to analyse as you are reading it then this is a great read. I found myself trying to link characters together and once all the pieces of the jigsaw started to fall into place it was as if one of them wasn't quite right and you had to start all over again. However, it is a clever thriller and you never know which character to trust. Your ideas are continually blown to pieces as another piece of the puzzle is unravelled.

I loved the chapters going down in number, like a countdown. But a countdown to what exactly? A new script, a new scene, a new conspiracy? Both clever and intriguing to read this novel rather surprisingly sucked me in and even though at times I didn't have the foggiest idea what was going on, I was in the full long journey. It's difficult to work out Victor with his change of surnames - can we change our identity so easily and become someone different? Or is it something new to hide behind, to prevent us from having to reveal what lurks underneath the skin? Bret Easton Ellis takes celebrity culture and slowly picks away at it to let us see what exactly goes on behind the images we see on screen and in print.

I've had this book lounging on my shelves for quite a few years now, (6 to be exact) and I finally decided it needed to be read. I wish I'd read it sooner!
Read more ›
Comment | 
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Not his best work!
Have read all but one by Brett easton ellis. American psycho by far my favourite. In all honesty- this book completely lost me. Read more
Published 3 months ago by wright
5.0 out of 5 stars The antithesis of the celebrity autobiography
I actually preferred this to American Psycho due to a slightly more humorous tone, a stronger central plot and the brilliant use of pop culture references. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Discerning Reader/Viewer
3.0 out of 5 stars The metaphor eats itself...
Glamorama expertly captures the vapidity of celebdom in Ellis' trademark, frequently stomach-churning, style. Read more
Published 8 months ago by GJ
1.0 out of 5 stars Zoolander on Drugs
This "novel" about a male model living among New York trendies in the 1990s is a kind of "Zoolander" on drugs without the presence of Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson to make it... Read more
Published 21 months ago by John Fitzpatrick
5.0 out of 5 stars Life with a soundtrack
This book was exceedingly slow to start and the vacuity of the main character was initially irritating. Could anyone really be this thick and frankly remote from real life? Read more
Published on 6 Jun 2012 by Ms. J. H. Brocklehurst
3.0 out of 5 stars An unnerving, uncomfortable read....
I had read and appreciated Bret Easton Ellis' American Psycho, and so was intrigued by Glamorama. Having read it, I'm still intrigued, and more than a little bewildered. Read more
Published on 18 Jan 2012 by Lauren Thomas
1.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely beyond overrated
One of the most overrated books i have ever read, 50% of the book is unnecessary too, it does not capture, as the author intended the "zeitgeist" of the specific time mostly... Read more
Published on 18 Jan 2012 by Angela Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars Glamorama
Just re-read Glamorama and had some further thoughts about it, especially after reading the discussion on Wikipedia. Read more
Published on 15 Sep 2011 by Miketang
2.0 out of 5 stars An absolute turkey...
I really liked American Psycho, and I wanted to believe this book was on a par with that one. I wanted to believe so much, I put up with what I was actually reading for the entire... Read more
Published on 11 Oct 2010 by bloodsimple
5.0 out of 5 stars Best yet? Maybe second best
Though there were times during the reading of this when I literally didn't have a scooby what was going on, I really enjoyed it. Read more
Published on 12 Aug 2010 by PJ Sturdee
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