Sunday, January 6, 2008

Broke Heart Blues

Title: Broke Heart Blues
Author: Joyce Carol Oates
Virago, 2007 (2000)

From the moment John Reddy Heart arrives from Las Vegas with his exotic family to the affluent suburb of Willowville, NJ, the town is aflame with gossip and curiosity. The family's seven-year-stint in town ends in drama and shock when John Reddy is accused of shooting one of his glamorous mother's lovers to death in her very bedroom.

This is really the story of a high school class whose strong bonds are cemented by their obsession with their classmate John Reddy Heart. The first part of the novel reads like a song with certain catch frases that are repeated like a chorus (which is what brings the addle-minded reader back on track) and devided from each other by elaborations on the scandal that rocks the town.

I enjoyed the style of the novel and the point-of-view which shows (when we hear John Reddy's side of the story) that a character who completely consumes one group of people can be almost oblivious to his admirerers existence. As so many other novels, however, it is too long and a bit unfocused with quite a few dead ends that I could have lived without.

1 comment:

CresceNet said...

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