Bright Lights, 25 Years Later

The Scotsman and the Telegraph have dueling features on Jay McInerney, who’s just published a new story collection, The Last Bachelor. (In the U.K., anyhow; Amazon isn’t listing a US version.) The Scotsman piece does make it clear why you ought not make a pig a part of your marriage, but the Telegraph story is more newsy and penetrating, bringing word that a new film version of Bright Lights, Big City is in the works, and shows McInerney wringing his hands over his literary reputation:

“I hadn’t thought about [Bright Lights, Big City],” says Jay McInerney. “I recently re-read it. It’s sort of like reading a book by somebody else. I thought, ‘Wow, that’s pretty damn good. Where did I come up with that?’

“Sometimes it seems an albatross, because it remains not necessarily my best but definitely my most successful book. When I die the words Bright Lights, Big City will be in the headlines. Probably not The Good Life, probably not Brightness Falls, probably not Story of My Life.”

In the case of the last book, that’s probably a good thing. I confess that I haven’t paid much attention to McInerney’s most recent work—recommendations welcome.

3 responses to “Bright Lights, 25 Years Later

  1. I have a galley of the McInerney collection in the house and Amazon confirms – it’s called HOW IT ENDED: NEW AND COLLECTED STORIES, and Knopf publishes in April:

  2. I noticed that, but I also saw that a collection called “How It Ended” came out in the UK in 2001:

    So either the US book is a reprint of a collection that’s been available across the pond for years, or he’s recycling titles. Or I’m missing something—that’s always an option.

  3. The Knopf edition is expanded from the UK “How It Ended” and the earlier “Model Behavior” but includes stories published as recently as May 2008. So I think it’s supposed to be the compleat short story works of McInerney…

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