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WEDNESDAY

Far too simple to be considered “metafiction,” Lunar Park is little more than a semiautobiographical “what if?” that just happens to feature Bret Easton Ellis as its protagonist. As satire (which is his defense against the critics, it seems), it lacks one key ingredient: It’s not even remotely funny. Oh, so the reason the book is wholly unentertaining is that I’m not supposed to take it seriously? I see. When Lunar Park finally lapses into pure fiction, it’s a heavy-handed, boring story of the hazy reality and paranoia that befall famous people. Of course, there are drugs. But the drug-problem sequences could have been pulled from any number of rock ’n’ roll biographies. I mean, Ellis might have had a drug problem, but he didn’t have this drug problem, or my 91-year-old blind aunt would have been talking about him. The author/narrator’s cocksure stance may be self-parody, but that doesn’t stop it from being incredibly grating. If arrogance is the domain of the truly superior, the truly superior should have eaten some shit, toiled in obscurity, and occasionally lost their dignity before success greeted them. And we all know that didn’t happen with Mr. Ellis. Ellis reads at 7 p.m. at Olsson’s Books & Records, 418 7th St. NW. Free. (202) 638-7610. (Andrew Earles)