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The Future Won't Be Long  By  cover art

The Future Won't Be Long

By: Jarett Kobek
Narrated by: Michael Crouch,Lauren Fortgang
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Publisher's Summary

A euphoric, provocative novel about friendship, sex, art, clubbing, and ambition set in 1980s and '90s New York City, from the author of I Hate the Internet.

When Adeline, a wealthy art student, chances upon a young man from the Midwest known only as Baby in a shady East Village squat, the two begin a fiery friendship that propels them through a decade of New York life. In the apartments and bars of downtown Manhattan to the infamous nightclub The Limelight, Adeline is Baby's guardian angel, introducing him to a city not yet overrun by gentrification. They live through an era of New York punctuated by the deaths of Warhol, Basquiat, Wojnarowicz, and Tompkins Square Park. Adeline is fiercely protective of Baby, even bringing him home with her to Los Angeles, but he soon takes over his own education. Once just a kid off the bus from Wisconsin, Baby relishes ketamine-fueled clubbing nights and acid days in LA, and he falls deep into the Club Kid twilight zone of sexual excess.

As Adeline develops into the artist she never really expected to become and flees to the nascent tech scene in San Francisco, Baby faces his own desire for artistic expression and recognition. He must write his way out of clubbing life, and their friendship, an alliance that seemed nearly impenetrable, is tested and betrayed, leaving each unmoored as the world around them seems to be unraveling.

Riotously funny and wise, The Future Won't Be Long is an ecstatic, propulsive novel coursing with a rare vitality, an elegy to New York and to the relationships that have the power to change - and save - our lives.

©2017 Jarett Kobek (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“Brilliant.... The chapters, alternating between the perspectives of Baby and Adeline, visit a pornographic movie house on Third Avenue; the Jones Diner, famous for its $1.50 cheeseburger deluxe; the homeless shantytown in Tompkins Square Park; the Tower Records at Broadway and Fourth Street. Baby succumbs to the underworld of nightclubs, becoming a fixture at the Limelight and the Palladium and ingesting every fashionable drug that ever made the rounds in Manhattan. Eighties ‘nihilit’ phenom Bret Easton Ellis is duly brought on for a cameo and ruthlessly mocked, as is Brooklyn Heights poohbah Norman Mailer. Writing with encyclopedic authority and striking equilibrium, Mr. Kobek punctures the glamour of these cultural signifiers by threading his narrative with grisly real-life crimes.... But there’s one other constant in the novel, and that’s the friendship that Baby and Adeline sustain through their succession of boyfriends and jobs and mental breakdowns. Mr. Kobek sensitively traces the convoluted paths they take toward forging their careers.... You can’t stop time’s passage, this absorbing novel reminds us. You can only find someone to love to help you survive it.” (Sam Sacks, The Wall Street Journal)

“Have you been pining for tales of drug-fueled big-city debauchery set in the pre-digital era, when MTV was king, people still used landlines and hookups were orchestrated on dance floors instead of dating apps? Look no further.” (The Washington Post)  

“Intensely readable: the dialogue is snappy, the barrage of opinions bracing, so that 10 years and 400 pages whizz by...compellingly vivid.” (The Financial Times

What listeners say about The Future Won't Be Long

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