So he goes home. He has no friends, no family, so he stays inside, isolated, Watching movies like other movies he’s seen before, actresses like that other actress a few years ago. Eventually, the autopay on his bills and rent runs out. He answers spam from his email while eviction notices appear on his door. Finally, he receives a strange interview summons from eccentric billionaire Mr. Crane, and receives an offer he can’t refuse.
When I was in grad school they jokingly started calling me the “Edith Wharton of the O.C.” and one of my professors idly commented that I should write a House of Mirth for Newport Beach. He may or may not have been kidding, but the idea struck me and I ran with it.
I’m a big fan of Charles Cumming. I loved A Spy By Nature, (reviewed it back in my AICN days), and got the chance to meet him recently. Charles and I bonded over John Updike, Mad Men, and The Jersey Shore, an eclectic conversation to be sure.
“Admission” is a school story with an original perspective, since in Danzy Senna we are dealing with a writer who is almost as rare as the unicorn: A writer with a unique perspective who also manages to be absorbing and stimulating and not just offbeat. Please save the readers of our country from offbeat writers who really have nothing to say. I am starting a fund for this purpose.
The thing is, reading this book, even at it’s darkest places, you can see Bob Thurber’s fingerprints. He’s so sharp – especially at short fiction – that he writes short burning chapters from which you can’t tear away. He slugs you right in the gut without any maudlin posturing – you’ll probably ask for more.