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What It Means to Love You

Elliott, Stephen

68 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1931561184 / ISBN 13: 9781931561181
Published by Macadam Cage Pub, 2002
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From Browsers' Bookstore, CBA (Corvallis, OR, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since November 23, 2001

Quantity Available: 1

About this Item

Signed. First Edition. First editon. Inscribed simply "Mel," [for Mel Waggoner] and signed by the author. Fine copy in fine dust jacket in a mylar protector. Though not marked, from the collection of Mel Waggoner, host of the public radio program "Profiles" which interviewed authors. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000087432

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Bibliographic Details

Title: What It Means to Love You

Publisher: Macadam Cage Pub

Publication Date: 2002

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


Following the release of his first novel, A Life Without Consequences, (MacAdam/Cage Fall 2001), Stephen Elliott returns with his second book, What It Means to Love You, the story of Anthony, Brooke, and Lance, three Chicago sex workers whose lives are interlinked as they travel the underworld that is Halstead Street.
Anthony, at thirty-four, finds himself stripping on the bottom rung of the ladder. He sees clearly that his days on the stage are numbered. But it is not easy for Anthony to leave the life. Before Anthony can stop stripping, he has to learn how to stop stripping.
Brooke and Lance came to Halstead Street in Chicago from Grand Falls, Michigan. Lance, handsome and strong, is in his mid-twenties and is starting to lose his mind. Brooke is seventeen and she has been turning tricks since she was fifteen. Her goal, one day, is to go back home to her father after her mother goes away.
What It Means to Love You extends far beyond these main characters. This is a novel about Chicago and all the boys and girls from all over the Midwest who run away to Halstead Street and the fate that awaits them there.

Stephen Elliott grew up a ward of the court in various institutions and group homes in Chicago. He earned his Bachelors degree at the University of Illinois and a Masters degree from Northwestern University. He has worked as a stripper, a cabdriver, a bartender, and a law school admissions consultant.
Stephen Elliott is the Truman Capote Fellow in the Wallace
Stegner Creative Writing Program at Stanford University. More of Stephen’s writing can be found at

From Publishers Weekly:

Blearily fatalistic and oddly elegiac, this second novel by Elliott (A Life Without Consequences) tells the story of two strippers and a call girl who roam grimy Halsted Street on Chicago's dark underside. Anthony, 34, still dances for a living, but is slowly losing his grip on street life as he grows older. Beautiful, unbalanced 27-year-old Lance has blue teardrops tattooed under his eyes to indicate how many men he has killed, but is helplessly in love with 17-year-old Brooke, who looks like a schoolgirl and secretly dreams of seducing the father she left behind in Michigan. Anthony observes Brooke and Lance's relationship from a distance while slowly becoming more enmeshed in their lives. As the novel builds to a climax, Lance teeters on the brink of madness, Anthony gradually begins to make a respectable life for himself and Brooke returns to Michigan to settle things with her father. The Chicago descriptions are grittily real, but the affectless present-tense prose ("Anthony looks up at Lance's smiling face. He knows Lance") grows monotonous. All Elliott's characters are cut off from their feelings, each of them a step away from disaster, and the story's conclusion is predictably brutal and unemotional. Elliott's history he has worked as a stripper himself and grew up in Chicago gives the novel the stamp of authenticity, but the listlessness of his characters keeps the narrative at a perpetual low ebb.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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