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Apartment por Teddy Wayne
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Apartment (edição 2020)

por Teddy Wayne (Autor)

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716291,268 (3.72)8
"In 1996, the unnamed narrator in Teddy Wayne's Apartment is attending the MFA program at Columbia on his father's dime and living in an illegal sublet of a rent-stabilized apartment. Feeling guilty about his good fortune, the narrator offers his spare bedroom - rent-free - to Billy, a handsome, talented classmate from a working-class family in the Midwest, who is attending Columbia on scholarship. As the semester progresses, the narrator's rapport with Billy develops into a friendship he hasn't had over a lifetime of holding acquaintances at arm's length. But the close quarters and power imbalance of their living arrangement breed tensions that neither man could predict. In elegant prose that interrogates the Clinton-era origins of today's most sensitive and resonant issues - the spectrums of gender and sexuality, the clash between coastal liberalism and heartland conservatism, socioeconomic identity and privilege - Apartment is a gutting portrait of one of New York's many lost, disconnected souls"--… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 6 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
I read this on the recommendation from a friend. It's a super quick read. It takes a while to get going, which isn't really a good thing considering it's only about 200 pages. Ultimately, I did end up liking it, as I'm a sucker for tragic endings, and I'd prefer a human tragedy to something that seems too hipster. I couldn't quite figure out either of the main characters. Who was the hero? Who was the villain? All was revealed eventually. I was rooting for their friendship but the needy bastard of a narrator messed it all up! The New York Times book reviewer who wrote about it referred to it as historical fiction. Which is scary, because it takes place in NYC in 1996! ( )
  jonathanpapz | Jul 3, 2020 |
"There is no good reason, at this stage of your life, to play it safe and hold back," she'd said. "This is the time to experiment and make mistakes and open yourself up to brutally honest feedback. That's the only way to grow as an artist. Fail again, fail better."

The narrator of Apartment is lucky enough to not only have a father paying his tuition and living costs, while he's attending the Colombia MFA program, but he's living in his great-aunt's apartment, a rent-controlled two bedroom, a much nicer living situation than that of most of the other graduate students. He's always been a little awkward around other people, slow to get to know people, resigned to having a few acquaintances as his only connections.

He's been working on a novel, but isn't prepared for the harsh reaction he receives from his peers. Only Billy, a Midwestern transplant a little overwhelmed by the city, has anything positive to say. Soon after meeting him, and on a whim, the narrator offers the empty second bedroom in his apartment to Billy.

This is a novel about the difficulty of making a connection, about how difficult male friendship can be and, especially, a novel about how one man can't manage to get past his own self-consciousness, despite his best efforts. It turns out that I like novels about people messing up their own lives, even when the protagonist is a white guy. While this does veer towards WMFuN* territory, it never quite manages to become one, despite the narrator's best efforts. There's a melancholy air to this story that I found utterly attractive. And when things careen past the merely uncomfortable, Wayne made the various things happening make sense and inevitable, given what had happened before. This is a really well done and beautifully written novel and I'm so glad to have found it.

* White Male Fuck-up Novel, truly a well established genre. ( )
  RidgewayGirl | May 11, 2020 |
APARTMENT by Teddy Wayne is an homage to Melville’s classic novel “Billy Budd.” Wayne updates his version of the moral conflict Melville portrays between innocent youth and cruel authority by setting his novel in a rent-controlled Manhattan apartment in place of an 18th century British warship. In this instance the main characters are MFA students struggling to succeed as writers. Not unlike Melville’s protagonist, Wayne’s Billy is an innocent young man from a poor rural Midwestern community. He is handsome, talented, and charismatic. The unnamed narrator lacks those traits. He is an introvert from an upper middle-class background. His divorced father is funding his education and lifestyle while his grand aunt is providing him with a rent-controlled apartment. He seeks friendship with Billy, probably because he views a close attachment to this obviously gifted person will reflect well on him. The novel is filled with much of the same sublimated homoerotic tension and denial that the Melville novel depicts. Wayne similarly explores moral dilemmas, although more nuanced and updated to the 21st century, including jealousy, justice and class.

The first part of the narrative is slow, reading like it may be building toward a homosexual awakening for both characters. However, it diverts rapidly toward something entirely different in the latter section. This transition seems abrupt and the ending lacks the detail that was present in the initial section of the book. ( )
  ozzer | Apr 6, 2020 |
I tried, I really did, but this was a frustrating book. I was glad the NetGalley ARC was on my Kindle. I think I have a good vocabulary, but I used the dictionary a LOT. I am giving it a 3, because I understand not all books are written with me in mind. I am not cerebral enough for this story about two guys in an MFA program at Columbia. Cerebral people probably don’t enjoy the books I do. ( )
  brangwinn | Mar 22, 2020 |
It's been done before. It's both predictable and hard to believe. So what? It's a thriller, it's fast and fun. And there are some twists, e.g., rent control! ( )
  breic | Mar 9, 2020 |
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"In 1996, the unnamed narrator in Teddy Wayne's Apartment is attending the MFA program at Columbia on his father's dime and living in an illegal sublet of a rent-stabilized apartment. Feeling guilty about his good fortune, the narrator offers his spare bedroom - rent-free - to Billy, a handsome, talented classmate from a working-class family in the Midwest, who is attending Columbia on scholarship. As the semester progresses, the narrator's rapport with Billy develops into a friendship he hasn't had over a lifetime of holding acquaintances at arm's length. But the close quarters and power imbalance of their living arrangement breed tensions that neither man could predict. In elegant prose that interrogates the Clinton-era origins of today's most sensitive and resonant issues - the spectrums of gender and sexuality, the clash between coastal liberalism and heartland conservatism, socioeconomic identity and privilege - Apartment is a gutting portrait of one of New York's many lost, disconnected souls"--

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