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"In the city of my birth, I had a dream..."
I Look Divine by Christopher Coe 
6th-Sep-2006 09:18 pm
Purchased randomly at a clearance sale at a used bookstore in Maine.

Coe, Christopher. I Look Divine. New York: Ticknor & Fields, 1987.
Summary: The once-divine Nicholas is murdered at the age of 37 by a rent-boy, leaving his brother with his many exotic possessions and singular memories of their near-incestuous relationship over the years.
Comments: Good Lord, reading about such a self-absorbed sibling is an exercise in masochism--even though I'm an only child! Nothing like associating with a flamboyant gay guy who thinks he's the greatest thing since man discovered fire. In any case, this novel is most interesting as a point of transition between the hedonistic but disaffected gay novels of the 70's and the open AIDS grief and outrage of the early 90's. Though perhaps the latter underlies the novel (Nicholas is killed by a prostitute, possibly with his own consent...it's not clear), it's not spoken aloud, and the larger purpose of the novel is that of eulogy--the hedonistic, self-indulgent life that Nicholas lives is a kind of living masterpiece of art and artifice. Thus, in hindsight, it was a meaningful life, a life well-, if unconventionally-, lived.
Notes: hardcover, 1st edition, out-of-print
Rating: 5/10 - A more than sufficient first novel, but I'm not sure if its appeal will transcend its subculture and/or moment in history.
1st-Oct-2006 03:27 am (UTC)
Review archived.
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