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Lush Life Paperback – 14 Feb 2009

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Product details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (14 Feb. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747596778
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747596776
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 89,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard Price is the author of seven novels, including Clockers, Freedomland and Samaritan. He won a 2007 Edgar Award for his writing on the HBO series The Wire.

(Photo credit: Ralph Gibson)

Product Description

Review

'Richard Price is the greatest writer of dialogue, living or dead, this country has ever produced. Wry, profane, hilarious and tragic, sometimes in a single line, Lush Life is his masterwork. I doubt anyone will write a novel this good for a long, long time' Dennis Lehane 'A gritty tale from a writer I really admire' James Patterson 'A visceral, heart-thumping portrait of New York City' New York Times 'Lush Life peels off the shiny top layer of New York to reveal the raw beating heart of the city post 9/11' Daily Mail

About the Author

Richard Price is the author of seven novels, including Clockers, Freedomland and Samaritan. He won a 2007 Edgar Award for his writing on the HBO series The Wire.

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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By nigel p bird on 31 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Richard Price is a heavyweight of a writer that's for sure.

For the first seven rounds of Lush Life, he's out like Cassius Clay, speed and footwork, nifty combinations and power, mouth and trousers. From then on, it's more of a case of the later Ali, all rope-a-dope with the occasional flurry of brilliance (and sometimes merely a flurry).

Lush Life is set in Manhattan. The beginning centres upon a group of characters whose lives are soon to intertwine, each of them vividly described and full of life - full of life, that is, until one of them is shot. The fallout from the murder is huge and the police are quick to arrest the victims boss, barman Eric, on the grounds that he's been identified by two eye-witnesses.

Eric is put under immense pressure as the cops try to find the information they need. As the investigation proceeds, the locality is laid bare and explored quite beautifully.

The day-to-day of police work and cop-politics are also exposed. Loyalties are stretched. Favours called in. Relationships explored. The need for people to `become something' is analysed.

Most importantly, the interest level is maintained at a high-pitch. The descriptions are superb and the dialogue purrs.

A new dimension is introduced when the victim's father arrives in town. He falls apart as the pages turn and it's a painful thing to witness as it seems so very true to life.

So far, so very good.

Up until the point where conflicting stories to those of the eye-witnesses come into play and the resolution to that particular issue is reached I was completely involved and delighted that there was so much more of the book to enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eileen Shaw TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 28 Oct. 2012
Format: Paperback
Award winning writer on The Wire, Richard Price is a writer who knows what he's doing. His use of the culture of the New York projects, the housing areas, the downtown bars and tenements, the boutiques and sex shops, the bling shops and car service centres, plus his cop-talk savvy and brilliant working of dialogue and description makes him one of the heirs to Nelson Algren (writer of The Man with the Golden Arm and A Walk on the Wild Side) as a writer prepared to write from a working-class perspective and depict the lives of black people with sympathy and realism as well as the cultural and social maelstrom of New York. The dialogue is so good it squeaks like clean hair.

The novel concerns Eric Cash, a thirty-five year-old man, struggling to write, meanwhile running a low-market café, who is walking home with friends when two men step out from the shadows and attempt a robbery, in the course of which one of his companions, Isaac Marcus, is shot dead. As a result Eric is suspected of the crime, since the witnesses cannot agree on how the shooting went down. He was holding a mobile phone at the time, a glittery object that is confused with the gun. His experience is terrifying, hauled in for questioning, subjected to degrading treatment. This is a deeply affecting novel for around the first half, but it sadly tails off somewhat after the initial incident and the scenes of Eric's interrogation.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful By S. Chiger on 4 April 2008
Format: Paperback
Let me start by saying that I'm a huge Richard Price fan. His earlier books--Bloodbrothers and The Breaks in particular--were epiphanies to me. For my money, Clockers is a contender for the Great American Novel. Technically, Lush Life is just as adroit--the snappy pacing, the spot-on descriptions, the breathtaking attention to detail, the surefire characterisations, all of which are Price specialities, are there, honed to stiletto sharpness. But while the plot would appear to offer plenty of opportunities for emotion--a 20-something man is murdered during an aborted hold-up, and in the course of the investigation we meet his mad-with-grief father--the overall effect is clinical rather than empathetic. That may be because none of the characters are really sympathetic; even the murdered man comes across as someone you'd avoid speaking to at a party for more than a few minutes. The result is a gripping read that keeps you flipping the pages so that you can absorb Price's dazzling word wizardry and learn the outcome of the investigation. Yet once you finish the book, the story and the characters, unlike those of Price's best books, are unlikely to remain with you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By PA on 20 July 2012
Format: Paperback
It's a long book, that's for sure and I was feeling it by the end.
It's also a very good one.
Eric, bar-manager, and Matty, Detective, are the eyes and ears through which we get to know the Lower East Side, which is written about as if it's the main character in the book. These two are forced together when Eric's barman is shot down with him there. Eric becomes suspect number one when two eye-witnesses finger him.
It's a bit like Yiddish Policemen in that it is a crime novel that feels literary and that's no bad thing.
Not as good as the other books I've read by Price but I'm recommending it.
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