Beautiful and charismatic, nineteen-year-old Checker Secretti is the most gifted and original drummer that the club-goers of Astoria, Queens, have ever heard. When he plays, conundrums seem to solve themselves, brilliant thoughts spring to mind, and couples fall in love. The members of his band, The Derailleurs, are passionately devoted to their guiding spirit, as are all who fall under Checker’s spell. But when another drummer, Eaton Striker, hears the prodigy play, he is pulled inexorably into Checker’s orbit by a powerful combination of envy and admiration. Soon The Derailleurs, too, are torn apart by latent jealousies that Eaton does his utmost to bring alive. “A bittersweet, graceful, poetic, yet clear-sighted vision....A tale about good and evil, and about the promise and pain of being nineteen.” – Cleveland Plain Dealer “More compelling even than the plot turns are Shriver’s insights into human nature....Checker and The Derailleurs, like its beguiling protagonist, is hard to forget.” – People
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Lionel Shriver's books include The Post-Birthday World, Game Control, and the Orange Prize-winning We Need to Talk About Kevin. She writes frequently for the Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, and The Independent. She lives in London.From Library Journal:
Shriver's second novel, about a teenage rock band in Astoria, New York, is at its best funny, clever, and touching. She uses a few interesting narrative techniques and peppers dialogue and exposition with quotations from and references to middle-of-the-road rock. Her own lyrics are terrific: "Turn a profit on all that ennui." But Checker Secretti, meant to embody mainstream rock, also represents the book's shortcomings. Although the reader is encouraged to see him as a fascinating enigma, Secretti no longer seems complex after some of his secrets are revealed. In an epilogue the rockers are older and "will learn about satisfaction," but this would entail betraying the message of rock and roll. Still, recommended.Ethan Bumas, formerly of the New Sch. for Social Research, New York
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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