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The Answer Is Always Yes

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This darkly exuberant debut novel—by turns a fierce, funny coming-of-age story and a teasing work of literary suspense—traces the precipitous rise and fall of a teenage impresario at the zenith of the New York club scene.

Matthew Acciaccatura of Teaneck, New Jersey, begins his freshman year at NYU in the fall of 1995 with one goal in mind: to become cool. A former high school outcast, used to lumbering the hallways alone in oversize turtlenecks, Matt seems an unlikely candidate for such a transformation. Yet by dint of effort he lands the coveted position of promoter at one of the hottest clubs in New York in the heyday of rave music and Ecstasy. However, as “Magic” Matt rises to fame, portents of tragedy begin to appear, literally in the margins of the story. Footnotes from one Dr. Hans Mannheim, an imprisoned German academic obsessed with Matt’s dangerous trajectory, suggest that Matt is not as in control of his destiny as he might appear….

A gorgeously written archetypal tale of self-discovery (and self-deception) and a love letter to the enduring possibilities of New York City, The Answer Is Always Yes will keep readers guessing until its explosive climax.

From the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Mar 31, 2008 – With a Stegner Fellowship and some big-name poetry publications under her belt, it's not surprising that Ferrell delivers a stylized and exuberantly written debut novel. Matthew Acciaccatura begins his freshman year at NYU determined to become cool. As it turns out, Matthew is the fixation of Hans Mannheim, an incarcerated German professor who annotates the novel with his increasingly creepy thoughts on Matthew's quest. Ferrell and Mannheim track Matthew's ascent up the ranks of New York hip, culminating in his transformation into “Magic Matt,” the promoter of über-hot club Cinema. As his last name suggests (acciaccatura is a note that creates dissonance within harmony), Matthew's new job takes some ugly turns; they are unexpected by Matthew and those close to him, but painfully anticipated by the reader. Ferrell is at her best when focusing on language and the explosive emotions that accompany jaded youth and idealism. Less successful, however, is Mannheim, whose most remarkable aspect is how caricatured he is. The writing is fabulous, but it's unfortunately in service of a lackluster plot and gimmicky structure.
The Answer Is Always Yes
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Literary
  • Published: May 20, 2008
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 400 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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