Bright Shiny Morning

  • by James Frey
  • Narrated by Ben Foster
  • 13 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

One of the most celebrated and controversial authors in America delivers his first novel - a sweeping chronicle of contemporary Los Angeles that is bold, exhilarating, and utterly original.Dozens of characters pass across the reader's sight lines - some never to be seen again - but James Frey lingers on a handful of L.A.'s lost souls and captures the dramatic narrative of their lives: a bright, ambitious young Mexican-American woman who allows her future to be undone by a moment of searing humiliation; a supremely narcissistic action-movie star whose passion for the unattainable object of his affection nearly destroys him; a couple, both 19 years old, who flee their suffocating hometown and struggle to survive on the fringes of the great city; and an aging Venice Beach alcoholic whose life is turned upside down when a meth-addled teenage girl shows up half-dead outside the restroom he calls home.Throughout this strikingly powerful novel, there is the relentless drumbeat of the millions of other stories that, taken as a whole, describe a city, a culture, and an age. A dazzling tour de force, Bright Shiny Morning illuminates the joys, horrors, and unexpected fortunes of life and death in Los Angeles.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Brillaintly written, brilliantly narrated

After falling in love with "A Million Little Pieces" James Frey's debut "memoir," I feared that his oh-so-public fall from grace would mean this innovative voice of contemporary American letters would be silenced forever.

But Frey has proven with "Bright, Shiny Morning" that his talent was no fluke. In fact, I liked this book even better than his two previous works.

"Bright, Shiny Morning" brings to life a cast of Los Angelenos--the beautiful and the damned, which in this novel, are often qaulities infused in the same character.

Frey takes us deep inside the warped psyche of the offensively rich, sickeningly self-absorbed Hollywood magastar--and then to the clever, humble Mexican American maid who fakes an accent so her wealthy, sadistic employer can feel superior. My heart was completely involved with the young couple who left abusive Midwest lives behind to find something better in LA. And he presents a sympathetic portrait of life on the streets of Venice, where homeless people eek out a living next to million dollar bungalows.

"Bright, Shiny Morning" yields up deeply crafted characters that put a heart and soul to those living in the ultimate soul-less city.

A note on narrator Ben Foster: As a legally blind person who is also a voracious consumer of books, I often feel at the mercy of marrators. A bad narration can ruin a great book. But Ben Foster was the perfect choice to bring this book to audio life. I loved his interpretation of the various characters' voices and the sardonic verve with which he infused Frey's jaded look at the land of big dreams. Simply brilliant narration.

I highly recommend this book. If you want to hear something cutting edge in literature--this is your book.
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- Annie M. "Say something about yourself!"

Sooo Good

This is such good writing. I love this author. I forgive him that he wasn't an addict. Oprah, you need to rethink your anger towards him. Maybe he just got caught up in the moment.....the NOW. He is becoming one of our primo authors. I was born in LA. I got out of there. Frey shows the butt end of that community and it is true and not pretty. If you ask me this is a piece of work, and by the way, this reader gets my 5 star applause.
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- Rina A. Stein "sewkrazy"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-13-2008
  • Publisher: HarperAudio