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Model Behavior

A Novel

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"A Great Gatsby for the end of the century."--The Baltimore Sun

"Swift and amusing. . . .  An astute social observer of the cruelties of modern New York, [McInerney] is also capable of great tenderness." --The Boston Globe

Jay McInerney returns to the restless urban landscape of Manhattan and offers us a glimpse of a devotee of the city whose faith is severely tested.

Connor McKnight's ennui is fast turning into anxiety as he struggles to keep his life intact. He has temporarily shelved his Akira Kurosawa biography in pursuit of an interview with elusive young actor Chip Ralston to secure his job at CiaoBella! magazine. Connor's model girlfriend has left him, and his brilliant sister is wasting away in anorexic seclusion. Ridden with angst and heartache, Connor can't even turn to his best friend, a brooding fiction writer who has balanced his sanity on the publication of a new story collection and the return of his Irish terrier. He is left to seek refuge in a vodka bottle, and consolation from a beautiful stripper at an upscale topless club, only to find that nothing can protect him from the harrowing fate that unfolds before his bleary eyes.

Together with seven stories that "remind one of . . . Fitzgerald and Hemingway" (The New York Times Book Review), Model
Behavior once again demonstrates McInerney's keen wit, deft portraiture, and lively skill with language.

"The careful observation of that downward spiral [is] brightened by McInerney's facility with the bon mot and his fondness for skewering the pretensions of the nouveau hip." --The Miami Herald

"Very funny, and full of the rakish, old-fashioned literary elegance that McInerney always manages to mix into the slangy idioms of his characters." --The New York Review of Books

From the Trade Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Aug 31, 1998 – The protagonists of these witty stories tend to be outsiders, never quite at home in their seemingly glamorous milieus: a young New York movie reviewer who hopes to sell screenplays in Hollywood; a famous actor who visits his wife at a mental institution; an aspiring writer who becomes a crackhead and lives among Manhattan's transvestite hookers. Connor McKnight, the hero of the first-person novel from which the collection takes its title, is no exception to this rule. He abandons his study of Zen and Japanese literature to write for a celebrity magazine in Manhattan and live with a model. At the same time, his best friend, Jeremy Green, a brooding, self-consciously Jewish short-story writer, becomes an unwilling socialite and fears jeopardizing his artistic reputation. Always scrupulous in demonstrating the comparative in-ness of his out-crowd, McInerney impresses here with his trenchant humor and keen eye for detail, as he vengefully skewers the New York literary scene and other, equally unforgiving cliques. (In a typical exchange, Jeremy asks whether Christopher Lehmann-Haupt is Jewish, then complains, "What's-her-fucking-name hates everybody except Anne fucking Tyler and Amy fucking Tan. I don't stand a chance. Wrong initials, wrong sex.") Although the novel ends abruptly and the seven stories, which span McInerny's career, seem tacked on, there is no question but that the aging 1980s wunderkind follows the scene of his early glory (Bright Lights, Big City) with a more savage, jaundiced eye. Say what you will, McInerny has few peers in chronicling a certain segment of contemporary society that he loves and hates at the same time.
Model Behavior
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Short Stories
  • Published: Sep 22, 1998
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 192 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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