After the Orange Glow
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
After the Orange Glow is an autobiographical novel about an American kid who finds himself in Paris France, where he becomes the Writer in Residence at the infamous bookstore Shakespeare and Company, which evolved from Sylvia Beach's historical publishing house into a flophouse for drifters, drug addicts, wanna-be-writers and underworld thieves. The eccentric George Whitman is the ancient alchemist who runs the joint, cooking up a meatloaf of mindgames and sexual tensions. It's 1993, AIDS is running wild, and so is Lily, a flipped-out stimulus-junkie who our hero soon becomes obsessed with in a maelstrom of wealthy benefactors, wacked-out weirdos, and rabid poets ranting in the streets, having tricked themselves into believing they can change the world by resurrecting Poetry -- an ideal, which, along with the overload of drugs and redwine in the story, drives delusional characters mad, to the point where the adventure becomes lethally absurd. There are angry young men, dirty old men, politicians, rock musicians, evil ghouls, missing people, nymphos and Pansexuals, even violence -- all culminating in an epic journey into Abyssinia and its aftermath, in an age of indifference, where romantically inclined minds must figure out ways to function in a world which has no place for prolonged adolescence. The first of three novels based on a Bohemia nobody knows is right beneath our collective nose.
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Spitzer, Mark Stevens, "After the Orange Glow" (2002). LSU Master's Theses. 1053.