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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A punchy surging monster of a novel
Ten years of waiting, a day and night's reading - Spanbauer is an amazing writer and in this novel he revisits New York in the early 80s. The darkness of the novel builds as the doomed characters struggle to kickstart their dream jobs whilst AIDS threatens to decimate the performance artists/actors/bohemians temorarily masquerading as waiters/waitresses/busboys.
Published on 20 May 2002

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A tale told in shades of black
Spanbauer is a novelist of complexity and brilliance, and his narrative style is uniquely his own. In each of his works, he creates a "family" of sympathetic individuals, set against a world of cruelty and indifference. This novel, however, is set against an epidemic of disease, poverty and violence that creates a far starker beauty. As you turn the pages, you are faced...
Published on 23 Mar 2009 by Daniel Park


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A punchy surging monster of a novel, 20 May 2002
By A Customer
Ten years of waiting, a day and night's reading - Spanbauer is an amazing writer and in this novel he revisits New York in the early 80s. The darkness of the novel builds as the doomed characters struggle to kickstart their dream jobs whilst AIDS threatens to decimate the performance artists/actors/bohemians temorarily masquerading as waiters/waitresses/busboys.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A tale told in shades of black, 23 Mar 2009
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Daniel Park "danielpark99" (West Yorkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Spanbauer is a novelist of complexity and brilliance, and his narrative style is uniquely his own. In each of his works, he creates a "family" of sympathetic individuals, set against a world of cruelty and indifference. This novel, however, is set against an epidemic of disease, poverty and violence that creates a far starker beauty. As you turn the pages, you are faced with a cull of characters unlike anything I've ever witnessed before in literature - there are moments of whimsy, but the driest and blackest of humour holds sway here, masquerading as mythology or philosophy. As a result, I personally felt that Spanbauer's characters were often relegated to cardboard cut-outs desperately trying to make a point out of the chaos of 1980's New York, and battling against a rising tide of revulsion on the part of both author and reader. There are flashes of heartbreaking poignancy - the AIDS-riddled young man who entrusts his greatest posession, the gold ring from his lover, to the palm of our narrator, before hurling himself from the hospital window into a dark New York night - but that darkness swallows not only him, but your very soul. It is a tale told in shades of black, so black that redemption, when it comes, rings as a false note in the Death Mass. This is Spanbauer's bravest work, but ultimately it is a glorious and magnificent sprawl of a failure.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Oh no, Yoko Ono, 11 Mar 2002
Before I started reading, I should have known that the premise of someone leaving rural America and going to New York would take me down a clichè-ridden path. Yes, the main character is naive to the point of being one dimensional and is basically bossed around by everyone. It is quite a painful read for anyone who has already gone through this phase in his/her life and has learned to tell people to shut up.
The supposed "hip" people in New York are shallow and exaggerated who place importance on attitude. There really is no friendship or affection among the characters.
The novel is like being dragged to a boring party, gagged and having pretty people tell you how stupid you are.
This was really a disappointment, because I really and truly enjoyed "The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon."
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In the City of Shy Hunters by Tom Spanbauer (Hardcover - Jun 2001)
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