The Dream Life

Bo Huston, Author
Bo Huston, Author St. Martin's Press $16.95 (165p) ISBN 978-0-312-08182-9
Reviewed on: 09/28/1992
Release date: 10/01/1992
Paperback - 172 pages - 978-0-312-09788-2
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In this overwritten novel about gay life, 30-something loner Hollis (``Holly'') Flood takes his tutorial responsibilities to extremes when he hits the road with Jed Levine, his 13-year-old charge. Why they hook up for this ``dusty, fast, dangerous trek,'' and why they remain together as long as they do, are questions Huston never satisfactorily answers. Early in the novel (written from the protagonists' alternating viewpoints) Holly states his concern ``that I never seem pretentious,'' yet he is given to frequent aphorisms and gratuitous, inscrutable pronouncements. Huston's ( And Re mem ber Me ) discursive style has its compelling moments, but he frequently undercuts his effect with overwrought prose, such as ``Jed was the highest, most mellow note a flute can make.'' In general, the characters here never really commit to their feelings, and as a consequence, the narrative fails to engage the reader's emotions. This distancing, coupled with a vaguely unpleasant turn of events toward the book's end, result in a sporadically moving but generally frustrating read. (Oct.)
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