Synopses & Reviews
From the acclaimed Rick Moody, a darkly comic portrait of a man who comes to life in the most unexpected of ways: through his online reviews.
Reginald Edward Morse is one of the top reviewers on RateYourLodging.com, where his many reviews reveal more than just details of hotels around the globe — they tell his life story.
The puzzle of Reginald's life comes together through reviews that comment upon his motivational speaking career, the dissolution of his marriage, the separation from his beloved daughter, and his devotion to an amour known only as "K." But when Reginald disappears, we are left with the fragments of a life — or at least the life he has carefully constructed — which writer Rick Moody must make sense of.
An inventive blurring of the lines between the real and the fabricated, Hotels of North America demonstrates Moody's mastery ability to push the bounds of the novel.
"In this entertaining critique of contemporary culture, written with vibrancy and wit, Moody not only provides a nuanced portrait of an Everyman but also deploys his playful yet artful approach to language."
"Moody offers both a subtle psychological portrait and even the hint of a mystery — 'what I would call the mystery of Reginald Morse,' he writes with game-is-afoot breathlessness in an afterword. It's a slyly delightful turn, considering all we've learned about Reginald and his views . . . Lively and lightly written . . . A sardonic but entertaining look at modern American life." Kirkus
"Moody's clever latest explores the narrative possibilities of online reviews, that form of democratic criticism crucial to the success of everything from toaster ovens to literature itself . . . The online reviews look back over a period of roughly forty years, from Morse's childhood stay at the Plaza Hotel in 1971 to a visit to a bedbug-infested Bronx motel in 2014. In his delightful archness and strategic reticence, Morse is reminiscent of the epicurean narrator of John Lanchester's The Debt to Pleasure . . . This is an amusing, vibrant narrative." Publisher's Weekly
About the Author
Rick Moody was born in New York City. He attended Brown and Columbia Universities. He is the author of four previous novels: The Four Fingers of Death, Purple America, The Ice Storm and Garden State, as well as an award-winning memoir and multiple collections of short fiction. Moody is the recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship, and his work has been anthologized in Best American Stories, Best American Essays, and the Pushcart Prize anthology. Moody lives in Brooklyn, New York.