Monday, May 23, 2011

Conrad In Beverly Hills

Conrad In Beverly Hills
Jake Fuchs
Raw Dog Screaming Press

Available for purchase at bookstores, on online services, and as ebook from Smashwords. 
Also available on Kindle via Amazon for $4.99,
As well as at:

Jake Fuchs, author of two satiric novels set in his present home town of Berkeley, has quietly produced a great novel that tackles the coming of age of a young man of sensitivity and character.  Conrad in Beverly Hills, his latest work of fiction, portrays a family’s circumstances that Fuchs knows as well as anyone.  Thirteen-year-old Conrad Keppler, a young man discovering his father’s past as a writer of literary fiction, attempts to save him from what the boy thinks of as the hell of corporate Hollywood.  Drawn from Fuchs’ personal experience as the son of a novelist turned Hollywood screenwriter, this novel is a labyrinth of memory and introspection.  Fuchs’ style, a distinct mingling of poetry, control and wit, speaks for itself.  A book that is at times scathingly funny finds its most comical and well-written elements in its portrayal of the movie business as well as life in today’s academe.   

After finding an unfinished story his father penned about their relationship, the mature Conrad, a fiftyish college professor, battles the uncertain disorder of reversed memories and dense transitions.  As an adult, Fuchs’ protagonist battles his father’s ghost as he tries to move on with his life.  The complication that ensues is a stunning work of literary fiction—one that brings with it shades of Woody Allen, Phillip Roth and even Saul Bellow.  Conrad in Beverly Hills, undeniably Fuchs’ best work to date, has established him, in my eyes at least, as an important American writer.   

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