Arts & Entertainments: A Novel

Beha, Christopher

Verlag: Ecco, 2014
ISBN 10: 006232246X / ISBN 13: 9780062322463
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Inhaltsangabe:

Christopher Beha delivers a cutting send-up of our cultural obsession with celebrity?a deliciously witty, and ultimately tender, novel about the absurdity of fame and the complexity of love sure to appeal to fans of Maria Semple and Jess Walter.

A sharp-edged satire with heart, Arts & Entertainments is the story of Handsome Eddie Hartley who, at thirty-three, has forgone dreams of an acting career for the reality of life as a drama teacher at a boys? prep school. But when Eddie and his wife, Susan, discover they cannot have children, it is one disappointment too many.

Weighted down with debt, his wife?s mounting unhappiness, and his own deepening sense of failure, Eddie is confronted with an alluring solution when an old friend-turned-web-impresario suggests Eddie sell a sex tape he made with an ex-girlfriend, now a wildly popular television star. Overcoming his initial moral qualms, Eddie figures that in an era when any publicity is good publicity, the tape won?t cause any harm?a decision that will have disastrous consequences and propel him straight into the glaring spotlight he once thought he craved.

A hilariously biting and incisive take-down of our culture?s monstrous obsession with fame, Arts & Entertainments is also a poignant and humane portrait of a young man?s belated coming-of-age, the complications of love, and the surprising ways in which the most meaningful lives often turn out to be the ones we least expected to lead.

Rezension: Adelle Waldman Christopher Beha

Adelle Waldman, author of The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P., interviews Christopher Beha

Adelle Waldman (AW): How did you decide to write about a sex-tape scandal? The plot has a bit of a ?ripped from the headlines? feel. Did you base it on any celebrities in particular?

Christopher Beha (CB): As unlikely as this sounds, the idea came from Edith Wharton - specifically, a story of hers called ?That Good May Come,? about an impoverished poet, unable to sell any poems to magazines, who is offered instead the opportunity to sell a piece of gossip about a society lady he knows. Before I?d finished reading the story I knew I wanted to update it for our time. It seemed somehow obvious to me that in today?s version the failed artist would be an actor, not a writer, and the ?gossip? would be a sex tape.

AW: Arts & Entertainments is very much about celebrity obsession and the culture of reality television. Do you watch reality TV?

CB: Before writing the book I hadn?t watched many ?celebreality? shows of the kind depicted in the novel, But two close friends of mine are reality-show producers. They shared a lot of information about how these shows get made, which no amount of watching such shows could have given me.

AW: Several characters from your first novel, What Happened to Sophie Wilder, reappear in Arts & Entertainments. Was it your intention to keep building on this world?

CB: Once I decided I wanted to write about a struggling actor, I immediately thought of Eddie Hartley, who is described briefly in the first chapter of What Happened to Sophie Wilder. His part in that novel is so small that it didn?t require any real backstory, but I?d written that he was a young actor with a few TV credits. Now it felt as though I?d created him so that I would have a struggling actor on hand when I needed one. I couldn?t possibly turn down the chance to tell his story.

AW: I found myself rooting for Eddie in spite of his flaws. Do you mean to satirize popular culture more than your characters?

CB: I wanted readers to understand the conditions that might cause an otherwise not necessarily bad guy to make some very bad decisions. Part of that is the culture. There is obviously something about our culture that encourages behavior like Eddie?s and even gives it an audience. That doesn?t mean I want to excuse him. The awful thing about life, says Jean Renoir, is that everyone has their reasons.


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Bibliografische Details

Titel: Arts & Entertainments: A Novel
Verlag: Ecco
Erscheinungsdatum: 2014
Zustand: very good

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Beha, Christopher
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ISBN 10: 006232246X ISBN 13: 9780062322463
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Buchbeschreibung Ecco. Paperback. Buchzustand: VERY GOOD. Very Good copy, cover and pages show some wear from reading and storage. Binding may have light creases. Lots of life left in these pages. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 2721225237

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Buchbeschreibung Ecco. Paperback. Buchzustand: GOOD. book was well loved but cared for. Possible ex-library copy with all the usual markings and stickers. Some light textual notes, highlighting and underling. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 2748329693

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Buchbeschreibung Ecco. Paperback. Buchzustand: GOOD. Gently used may contain ex-library markings, possibly has some minor highlighting, textual notations, and or underlining. Text is still easily readable. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 2749530877

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Buchbeschreibung Ecco. Paperback. Buchzustand: GOOD. book was well loved but cared for. Possible ex-library copy with all the usual markings and stickers. Some light textual notes, highlighting and underling. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 2749610667

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Buchbeschreibung Ecco. Paperback. Buchzustand: Very Good. Ex-Library Book - will contain Library Markings. Book has appearance of light use with no easily noticeable wear. Buchnummer des Verkäufers G006232246XI4N10

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