The Follower 

Jason Starr ? St. Martin?s Minotaur ? On sale August 7

Jason Starr’s latest novel takes a cynical look at the 21st-century Upper East Side, a place Starr populates with rich and vapid young professionals. In setting and scope, Starr is operating somewhere between Auster’s City of Glass and Easton Ellis’s American Psycho. His prose is capable and sometimes engaging, but like so many pot-boilers, The Follower is built primarily of extended scenes of dialogue while being noticeably light on capable, explicative narration. Where Auster’s language is prosaic and metaphoric and Easton Ellis’s is sparse and knowing, Starr’s is dressed up in colloquialisms and references to restaurants and street corners. The effect is, at first, jarring. The hollow and heavily referential tête-à-tête between characters does become more interesting about halfway through the novel, when Starr hits a narrative stride that’s occasionally fun, if not irresistible. Ultimately, The Follower isn’t for everybody, though its colorful and hyperbolic look at New York will appeal to mystery lovers unfamiliar with the city, who don’t know how to get to the Upper East Side.    

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