We are, of course, beyond grateful that someone out there has seen fit to provide indelible evidence demonstrating just how malleable Mr. Lipsyte is in a supine position. Forget prose, plot, character, exposition, and a dependable collection of laughs. Hero worship is, after all, the m.o. behind any breakthrough novel.
These days, Mr. Lipsyte is more popular than Jesus. He is so hot that Bret Easton Ellis and Jay McInerney are now leaving long voicemails on Mr. Lipsyte’s machine, wondering if Stolid Sam might have any “leftover groupies” that might remind them of the glory days. Mr. Lipsyte, to his considerable credit, has vowed that he won’t be reduced to lecturing about wine in ten years. To which we offer him considerable props. Nor will he be languishing in Hollywood banging out novels revisiting the same territory explored in Home Land.
While this is the kind of tricky situation that might tarnish a one-trick pony, in Mr. Lipsyte’s case, it has worked out quite well. Because Mr. Lipsyte also has a short story collection to back up his streetcred.
So we’re exceedingly grateful to everyone promoting the current efforts. We were beginning to think that we were the only ones out here who read Home Land with a roll of toilet paper within arm’s reach. Splashy debut novels often have that effect on us. We reacted the exact same way when reading Revolutionary Road and Tender is the Night. In Mr. Lipsyte’s case, as we read the book, we laughed like a dormouse pondering the ineffectual cheese traps devised by pesky homo sapiens. Home Land: funny shit, yo. Pass it on. Pay it forward.
But (with all due respect, of course) wait for Novel #2 before declaring Sam the voice of a new generation. That’s all we have to say on the matter.
Incidentally, we’re back. The indignant Indians have fled the coop. We have a redesign in the works. We could offer a lengthy tale about our momentary bout with the flu and the fact that our computer died, but we’re just damn happy to be alive and well. Hoping you are the same.
[UPDATE: As Maud was kind enough to point out, Home Land is Novel #2. To prevent any future mishaps, we’ve enrolled in a six-week counting class that starts next week, discovered in our local extended education catalog.]