As a police launch speeds across Miami's Biscayne Bay - with officer Nestor Camacho on board - Tom Wolfe is off and running. Into the feverous landscape of the city, he introduces the Cuban mayor, the black police chief, a wanna-go-muckraking young journalist and his Yale-marinated editor; an Anglo sex-addiction psychiatrist and his Latina nurse by day, loin lock by night - until lately, the love of Nestor's life; a refined, and oh-so-light-skinned young woman from Haiti and her Creole-spouting, black-gang-banger-stylin' little brother; a billionaire porn addict, crack dealers in the 'hoods, "de-skilled" conceptual artists at the Miami Art Basel Fair, "spectators" at the annual Biscayne Bay regatta looking only for that night's orgy, yenta-heavy ex-New Yorkers at an "Active Adult" condo, and a nest of shady Russians.
Based on the same sort of detailed, on-scene, high-energy reporting that powered Tom Wolfe's previous bestselling novels, Back to Blood is another brilliant, spot-on, scrupulous, and often hilarious reckoning with our times.
I have been reading Tom Wolfe for decades ... The manic rhythms and hip verbosity of his writing are instantly recognizable even to the point of repeating various tropes. His propensity for naming and counting the musculature of male characters as well as the delights of female bodies shows up in every book. This book was no different. I was weary of the same old stuff and wondered if Wolfe hadn’t passed his prime. I worried that his use of sexual language went outside the realm of what BookBrowse could recommend to its readers.
And yet – I picked the book back up each time I thought I was done with it. Why? (Reviewed by Judy Krueger).
About every eight to ten years since the 1987 publication of Bonfire of the Vanities, Wolfe writes a novel summing up America's zeitgeist. This wide-lens view of Miami's Biscayne Bay sounds no different.
Filling his prose with sound effects, foreign phrases, accented English, and slang, Wolfe creates his own Miami sound machine—noisy, chaotic, infused with tropical rhythms, and fueled by the American dream. The result is a book louder than it is deep; more sensational than it is thought provoking; less like Wolfe at his best, more like tabloid headlines recast as fiction.
Starred Review. As if the 45 years from Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test to here hadn't passed, Wolfe is back to some old tricks, including an ever-shifting, sometimes untrustworthy point of view, dizzying pans from one actor to another and rat-a-tat prose...A welcome pleasure from an old master.
Starred Review. Within a masterfully strategized plot, Wolfe works his sardonic mojo to mock both prejudice and decadence and demolish the art world, reality TV, tawdry fame, and journalism in the digital age...This is a shrewd, riling, and exciting tale of a volatile, diverse, sun-seared city where 'everybody hates everybody.'
Tom Wolfe was born on March 2, 1931 in Richmond, VA. He was editor of his high school newspaper and sports editor of his college newspaper. His college professor of American Studies, Marshall Fishwick, stressed looking at the entirety of a culture including its profane aspects. Wolfe's books show how much he took this to heart.
After taking a doctorate in American Studies at Yale, he began his working life as a reporter, working for both The Washington Post and the New York Herald Tribune. One of his first feature articles appeared in Esquire magazine. Covering the hot rod and custom car culture of southern California, it was included in and became the title of his first book, The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby. Its appearance in 1965 established Wolfe as a leading writer in what was called the New Journalism. Along with Truman Capote, Hunter S Thompson,...
It's 1897. Gold has been discovered in the Yukon. New York is under the sway of Hearst and Pulitzer. And in a few months, an American battleship will explode in a Cuban harbor, plunging the U.S. into war... This is history rediscovered through the lives of the people who made it happen.
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