Review of Second Novel of Liz Moore
A long time ago, in 2012, I read Liz Moore’s second novel, which I remember, although I have read so many books under the bridge since then, not much else. When I discovered the words of each song in the schemes, I had not noticed that it was their debut, attracted by The New York music scene. No doubt it was re-released thanks to President Obama’s resounding endorsement of Long Bright River last year, but it’s a novel worth reviving on its own. It follows the careers of various acts signed by the Titan Label for several years and explores the fickleness of the music business and the pay demanded by those who work there.
But Lenore, looking at the crowd, shows nothing but some kind of touching passion for music: her forehead well frowned, her right foot pounding to the beat of the music – just like Theo works in A & R, under increasing pressure from her boss to put an autograph. He’s been promoting the Burn for a while and knows they’re not what Jax had in mind, but they love their music. His debut album has some success, but nothing puts him in the same league as Tommy Mays, The Star performer of titan, who is currently struggling with an alcohol problem and the attraction of his young family. Jax’s Secretary, Cynthia, recently acted as a receptionist and fears visits from Titan’s rising star Lenore Lamont, who left her after four years.
Once the contracts are signed, Theo is aware that Jax needs to be reassured, relieved when a group of teenage girls turn out to be better than expected, and catches him to his surprise. In the two years that the novel covers, chance and whim, hype and navigation play their part in the fate of the careers of these artists, which end with unexpected and spectacular success and fame for one of them.
All three together. And they are all so broken at heart. And they are all so young, apart from his environment, the other attraction of Moore’s novel for me was its structure, which takes the form of a series of closely related stories. The puzzle piece of each character fits perfectly, from the sound engineer eager to meet his Ex-wife to Jax’s parents, the wealthy owners of a Manhattan House who don’t know their World. The backstories are easy to outline and the future is suggested. Characters come in and out of other people’s stories. Everything works wonderfully. Moore does not hide the cost of being a player in the music world, the potential for Crash and burn, the constant pressure and uncertainty, and the chaotic life that is led. Quite an entertaining novel, quietly accomplished, it made me get my hands on a brilliant long river copy.