Monday, April 5, 2010


Hello everyone and welcome to Random Monday (an idea I stole from Kirsty of Other Stories - Thank you, Kirsty!!). Basically, you go to random.org and the number it comes up with you match to one of your bookish cataloging sites, like LibraryThing or GoodReads, and write a post about the book that's been randomly selected. The number I got today was 69.

Lunar Park by Bret Easton Ellis

Alright, so I read this book a few years ago when I was living in England and for some reason had fallen into a Bret Easton Ellis kick. I had just gotten two films via LOVEFiLM : Less Than Zero and American Psycho - and became really interested in reading the books that these two films had been based on. So, I went off to Waterstones and bought several of Bret Easton Ellis' works, and Lunar Park was one of them.
From what I recall, the book creeped me out. There was a toy in the book that the main character was convinced had come to life and he described it as one of those Firby-like toys - the furry little alien looking pet-like toys with big eyes and I think they made noises. Anyhow, that image alone freaked me out - don't know why, because I have seen Child's Play and that didn't spook me. I suppose it was the hysterical, frantic-ness of the character's tone that really jolted me with a touch of fright.
Basically, the book is about the character, Bret Easton Ellis (aka the author), as he tries to regroup after having dealt with the excesses of fame/celebrity at such a young age. He is now married to an actress and has a son and is living in the suburbs, where he is trying to write his new book. Things begin to go terribly awry. Ellis is convinced he sees the character, Patrick Bateman from his novel American Psycho, at a Halloween Party; he is convinced that the Firby-like doll is trying to kill him and that there evil spirits in his house; a string of kidnappings of young boys catches his attention as it reminds him of his young son; the plot of American Psycho seems to be coming to life; and Ellis appears to becoming mentally unglued. All in all, a tale of how Ellis' own personal demons are besting him once again and ruining the life he has tried to build for himself.
What I remember enjoying about this book, (because though it spooked me, I simply couldn't put it down) was the writing. It reminded me of Ellis' earlier work, Less Than Zero - which I have always considered to be a must read book - for the ways it captures the affluent, drug addled culture of the 80s so astutely. I found Lunar Park to be a refreshing piece of work that truly engages with the reader, especially fans of Ellis. The way he inserts himself into the book is done so fluidly that you truly begin to believe that these events in the book were happening to Ellis as you read about them, because they feet urgent and very recent. Definitely another great book by a truly talented writer.
Alright, well, I must get back to my current reads: The Brothers Karamazov and The Book Thief. Hope everyone has a terrific Monday. Happy Reading!!


Ash said...

I love this idea! I've never read any Bret Easton Ellis even though most people I know love his work. One more thing to try and read eh?

A Bookish Way of Life said...

Thanks, Ash! You should definitely give Ellis a try - American Psycho and Less Than Zero were excellent novels (albeit a bit graphic, but defnitely the types of books that make for great discussion). It does seem like there are always more and more books to add to the pile, eh? Its a bit overwhelming and exciting at the same time. :)

Lisa said...

My son loves, loves American Psycho but I don't think he's picked up any of Ellis' other books.

Kirsty (Other Stories) said...

I've only tried American Psycho, but I got to the bit with the rat and couldn't go on. Normally I'm pretty resilient to gore in books, but it was a bridge too far for me!