Author: Teddy Wayne
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Genre: Literary Fiction
I absolutely love books with unnamed narrators. You don’t even know if they are reliable or not. You don’t know their name, so in all probability, there is so much hidden that comes to fore and that somehow always happens when I venture into such reads.
Apartment by Teddy Wayne is an excellent book, not only on the human condition but also on a brilliant character study of loners and how men sabotage their relationships. The unnamed narrator sublets an illegal bedroom while he attends Columbia’s MFA writing program. At the program, he meets Billy, a Midwest, working-class bartender who wants to write and make a way in the world. Basis one incident at the workshop, the pair strike an unlikely friendship, resulting in Billy getting a place to stay and the narrator somehow desperately needing Billy’s approval and validation.
So, the book started off strangely for me. The passive-aggressive dance between the men was somehow too much to handle and then it became easy. There are opinions and several of them throughout the book, which makes for very interesting reading.
Wayne’s writing falls on the thriller/mystery device and somehow that worked for me, even though there were some parts when the characters did not connect with me. That being said, I did finish the book in three days, while reading other books.
Apartment is fast-paced and well-plotted. It keeps you on the edge (in some ways) and also makes you aware of what happens when relationships take a bitter turn when there is no good side or bad side when there is just how events play out, and how people react to emotions – of self and others. Apartment is a great story about men and their lives, quite interestingly told.