Final Performance

James Brown, Author William Morrow & Company $18.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-688-06842-4
In this gripping novel, a young man looks back over his troubled adolescence, while at the same time exploring the events leading to his older brother's suicide. Jay and Mike McKinney are teenagers when their mother, Gina, is arrested for arson. Once released from jail, Gina leaves her husband and takes the two boys to Los Angeles, intending to make a fresh start. That possibility is destroyed when the amoral Gina again runs afoul of the law. The family's story, as told by Jay, is a disturbing one. Mike, the older brother, is a talented actor and has early success in the movies. As a minor, however, he must live under his mother's crushing and greedy control. He is soon drinking heavily. The equally unhappy Jay, a budding writer, becomes a thief. With its sensitive characterizations, this second novel by the author of Hot Wire offers an unflinchingly realistic look at a family in turmoil. And, while much of the story is grim, it ends on a hopeful note. (February 26)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1988
Release date: 02/01/1988
Genre: Fiction
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