Hot and freaking ginormous. City on Fire, the much-ballyhooed novel by Garth Risk Hallberg, is 944-pages long. A thumping doorstop. It contains 94 chapters, plus a prologue and a postscript. And it’s set to hit shelves (fingers crossed they’re buttressed) on October 13th.
Comparisons are being made to Bonfire of the Vanities and Dickens and David Foster Wallace. Books and authors aren’t judged on their own merits, you see, they’re labeled and categorized. Always the next le Carré or Hemingway, always the new something. And City on Fire is the new Bonfire of the Vanities since the setting is wicked, imploding New York; the new Dickens for the characters and social conditions; the next David Foster Wallace based on weight.
Incredibly, the hype might be even bigger than the book. The publishing world is betting this goes beyond blockbusting and veers into a revolutionary, industry-changing event. Heh, it better. Knopf…
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