Contains two novellas: "Almost Tall" and "The Missing Clip-On." A fourteen-year-old ballerina gets swept up in a whirl of cocktails and haute couture under the mercurial attention of her uncle’s lover. A sweet punk rocker introduces us to the world's first conceptual band and the epic love story that is its undoing.In "Almost Tall" fourteen-year-old Dinah finds herself pluContains two novellas: "Almost Tall" and "The Missing Clip-On." A fourteen-year-old ballerina gets swept up in a whirl of cocktails and haute couture under the mercurial attention of her uncle’s lover. A sweet punk rocker introduces us to the world's first conceptual band and the epic love story that is its undoing.In "Almost Tall" fourteen-year-old Dinah finds herself plucked from her provincial midwestern ballet class and dropped in her uncle’s glittering New York penthouse. In "The Missing Clip-On" we hear the über-hip story of the world's first conceptual band through the voice of a secretly sincere punk rock chick who never really gets the hang of forging a life out of a "scene."In both, genuinely lovable characters struggle with poise and pain against a New York City that seems determined to turn innocence into cynicism and the young into strangers to youth....
|Title||:||strangers to youth two novellas|
|Number of Pages||:||178 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
strangers to youth two novellas Reviews
Wow, I am really impressed with these two stories. I liked them so, so much; if I could read a book of six or seven of them, I would love it.These are some of the best New-Yorky stories I can remember reading. It's a pretty full genre, but these totally did the trick for me. Each of them encapsulates the deep world of one of the many subcultures, lifestyles, neighborhoods, other divisions by which we all live such very different lives in New York City.The first one: indie music. "The Missing Clip-On." The Lower East Side/Alphabet City/eventual-Williamsburg-migrants hanging on to the punk rock dream and way of life that thrived/thrives there. The author's details are so deeply recognizable. I recognized types of people I knew, I know what all those venues are like (and also, Two Boots!), I've seen some pretty shitty apartments. The realness really clicked.None of that would really matter if the story wasn't any good, but I loved it. We get a dual narrative of a kind: first, a first-person girl bassist trying to make it/waiting tables, and second, a story she learns. She buddies with another waitress-musician, and moves into a terrible apartment building, and works on her own shit, searching through her angst in the ways you do. (Also, something crazy happens.) She's a great narrator for the story. She presents Damon's story to us almost like a folk history of one band's career, but it's far more than that. A sometime musician, he ends up finding his real calling as (I once knew someone who liked to term herself) a "scene-maker": getting his finger on the pulse of the trends, on the teetering precipice of the irony, and then making a bunch of money selling the best t-shirts in Brooklyn. (Ultimately, he styles a band that doesn't really exist yet gets booked anyway. It's not actually as satirical as it sounds.) But what really happens is in his personal story, and what occurs after he falls in love, and what a terrible sad end it all has. His moments of love and openness are monumentally great, so breathtaking and delicately written, and they just legitimize everything in the story that might seem silly. Both narratives are brooding, but full of a journey.The second story, "Almost Tall," is the reason I got this book. I'd heard about it when it was released separately last year, but I couldn't get a copy. I knew I wanted to, though. The description was so good it drove me mad: a 14-year-old, shipped out to summer ballet program, staying with her rich uncle and his boyfriend, inevitable overwhelmingness! Oh. It's fabulous. I'll take a hundred, sight unseen.There is a little bit of ballet, but the real cultural immersion comes at the hands of the boyfriend, Eddie, an aging gay man with an overabundance of drama, ridicule, and fashion sense. He lives the penthouse life but never seems to work; he knows the highest of the high but they break his dinner dates. He designs pillows? And he isn't all that nice. Eddie's feelings are probably hurt that he has never been offered a Bravo show. But despite all this, there is so much realness to him. Dinah, our girl, ends up having to spend most of her time with him, and eventually they strike a strange and precarious kind of workable social partnership. He pretends to be annoyed, yet parades her around and trumpets their "triumphs" at cocktail hours; he doesn't really know her, but makes sure she has some fun. (Until he doesn't.) But all throughout it, we're in Dinah's head, seeing how damn much she can take when somebody rich says something cruel about her (ballerinas, man!), and watching her watch Eddie. And we're with her when she cracks, and is finally given some pieces of true generosity.The only thing wrong with this book is how much more I want. I want more of Vestal McIntyre's New York City. I hope he might be working on some.Because this writing is so new, and there's so little info on it available, I'm including some of my absolute favorite quotes. (In spoilers, for space.)(view spoiler)[Betsy, a product of a big Jewish family on Long Island, threw this type of abuse around playfully, and I tried my best not to take it to heart – my fragile, only-child-from-Illinois, heart. My Christmas-ornament heart..“Maybe someday,” her mother said, “they’ll invent a soap that will wash away old tattoos you don’t want anymore.”This sentiment, which, an hour ago, would have struck Damon as mawkish and provincial, nearly made him cry..At this, Rebecca passed Dinah a smile like a folded note..But Dinah witnessed moments when Eddie forgot to be himself, when his shoulders melted into his form, his head bowed, and he seemed old and round. This was usually when he was gazing out of cab windows at the passing city. His little fingertips picked at each other, and a crease of worry divided his brow. What do we live for? The question startled Dinah from within. Then the cab reached its destination, and with one inhale Eddie’s angles returned. (hide spoiler)]I'd love for this little book to get out there more, but it's kind of a weird arrangement. I downloaded this using a trial subscription for the book service Rooster, run by the DailyLit people. During July 2014 you can get this book when you sign up and use the app, but I'm not sure if you can ever get it after that? It's a little complex and annoying, and I don't think the actual service is really for me (I'm not that into curated reading; I only just joined a book club for heaven's sake), but I am so glad I took the opportunity to read these.