And he frets about a growth on his neck that may be responsible for his malaise. Thank God these weren't the kind of Americans who settled this country. He's hired as a consu I like Dave Eggers' new novel, Hologram For a King, mostly because it profiles a loser in the amazing race of advanced capitalism. Curious to see the movie and compare it to the book. The setting is a flat caricature of Saudi Arabia, with a deformed businessman somehow seducing two women over there, one Danish, one Saudi , earning a large commission while simultaneously moping about the end of the American Dream and the Yellow Menace of the Chinese.
He meets a Danish beauty with an office in the Black Box and a secret stash of moonshine. But eventually, Eggers was successful in evoking my sympathy, even a feeling of tenderness. Read this if you haven't already, and his other books, too. He is a 54-year-old failed American businessman in serious debt, evading his creditors and anguishing over how he will pay for his daughter's next year in college. Children, when they become teenagers and then young adults, grow unforgiving. There is nothing inaccessible about it.
Loved the inclusion of nonfictional bits like about Schwinn's fall and the blast-resistant glass for the Freedom Tower made in China. The upshot is the prose can't carry the weight of an exploration of some of the most important social and economic issues of our times. That being said, A Hologram for the King is a very good book about a vanishing America and an increasingly obsolete American worker. Update: This is an old review. Presently, it looks like anywhere and nowhere--it could be Los Angeles, or Orlando, as there is nothing to give it distinction, except for its looming neutrality and the few towering or squat, square buildings. It proved itself worthy pretty damned quick.
That seems the perfect place for Alan, for a guy who knows he's in trouble but doesn't know how to find his way out. However, I became utterly distracted by some very obvious things that were not caught by a copy editor I suspect that there was no editor. All errors are unforgivable, as if a contract of perfection has been broken. There was a two-storey welcome centre, vaguely Mediteranean in style, surrounded by fountains, most of which were dry. Do you feel distant from Alan, or do you feel empathy for him? The book is emblematic of what Eggers sees as wrong in America today: the collapse of homegrown industry, the outsourcing of labor, a loss of confidence, soured ideals. Same as it ever was. A hologram is a three-dimensional photographic image that appears to have depth; in reality, it is only an illusion.
Well, the hardcover edition has a pretty cover. I really don't know where his eternal literary reputation is going to land fifty plus years hence, but I hope he's at least remembered for having the chutzpah to place Rising Up and Rising Down into the public sphere. I would have much preferred story focusing on Yousef. How Alan Failed To Get His Groove Back Alan Clay has lost his mojo in a big way. This way to the mirror.
It's got a lot to say about economic globalization, work vs. The city seems full of promise, but it's also desolate, unfinished, and on the brink of obscurity. The plot also looks interesting in summary as well. And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? But it doesn't pull it off very effectively and just left me sort of annoyed. The book is bleak and tragicomic, like much of Beckett's work, yet very much focused on the human condition. Clay, it turns out, is a former Schwinn bikes executive who presided over the transfer of its manufacturing to the Far East, thus creating the economic climate that has so messily eviscerated his career. The characters are full and real, I was glad to meet them,at least this way.
A few pages later, the bottle has become a glass and in some places is referred to by two different names. Judges Citation A novel poised on the central meridian of our times. They were at dinner in Taipei, with a supplier and his wife. In 2002, with Nínive Calegari he co-founded 826 Valencia, a nonprofit writing and tutoring center for youth in the Mission District of San Francisco. Incised and dusted with gold, its feel was a tactile pleasure not often found in today's reading universe, and it was a marvelously apt visual image for the story within. Half the fun for me in the first half was trying to predict where the story would go. Certainly that point is made, but not forcefully.
The book speaks plainly about how the greed of the West has been its own downfall, and has helped crush the American Dream. Alan also meets Yousef, a young Saudi man who becomes his chauffeur. Will the King show up? Now I'm in that camp, too. That's what I did with this book and I was very sorry I did. His descriptions of the Saudi environment and the close-up look he offers from time to time about Saudi life are fascinating.
Eggers tweaks with facts to support his themes and goals. My brothers and I would have been sent to various places for school, for me it would have been Switzerland, a boarding school. It reads like the memoir of a 21st century Willy Loman, so readers will either love or hate it. Zahra Hakem, and the two begin a tentative, though short-lived, romance as Zahra goes to Paris on business. In other words, Alan Clay is America in decline.
Unfortunately, whenever Eggers tries to concoct a compelling novel, he falls flat. Alan commutes between faraway Jeddah and the nascent city, often oversleeping and missing the shuttle. They have to wait for him indefinitely in the hope that something really good will happen when he gets there. . Alan, individualist and good capitalist, finds himself at middle-age being pushed aside.