Wednesday, September 2, 2015

THE FALL OF PRINCES by Robert Goolrick

As many have stated Goolrick is indeed a terrific writer - penning words so sharp that they stab almost like a knife and may very well leave a reader feeling slightly wounded.  His descriptions sear; his wit probes.  The Fall Of Princes is a story of loss and redemption taking place in the New York City of the 1980s.

We meet Rooney, a relatively young Wall Street trader, who has it all and even more.  The perks he receives working for an entity known as The Firm are seemingly endless - limos at his beck and call, more money than most of us ever see, drugs, beautiful women, and power.  He’s on a high roller coaster ride he doesn’t believe will ever end, but it does - quickly.  Suddenly Rooney is an outsider looking in - no more hundred dollar bottles of wine or nubile women and oceans of vodka at the Russian Tea Room.  He is now a clerk at a Barnes and Noble yet so longing for the life he once had that he orders expensive item, tries them on in his shabby apartment and returns them promptly.  The man simply does not know what to do.

As some will remember those years were also a time of AIDS, although fearful Rooney remembers his many sexual partners - both men and women.  He dreams of his past life but it is now, and he has to come to terms with who he was then and who he is now and what may lay ahead.

As disturbing as some parts of The Fall Of Princes were for this reader the book was impossible to put down as Goolrick vividly describes the intoxicating highs and painful lows of Rooney’s life.

- Gail Cooke

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