Arts & Entertainments
Handsome Eddie Hartley has forgone dreams of an acting career for the reality of life as a drama teacher at a boys’ prep school. Weighted down with debt, his wife’s mounting unhappiness, and his own deepening sense of failure, Eddie is confronted with an alluring solution to all his problems when an old friend-turned-web-impresario suggests that he sell a sex tape he made with an ex-girlfriend, now a wildly popular television star.
A hilariously biting and incisive take-down of our culture’s monstrous obsession with fame, Arts & Entertainments is also a poignant and humane portrait of a young man’s belated coming-of-age and the surprising ways in which the most meaningful lives often turn out to be the ones we least expected to lead.
"Beha’s story could be (and is) a light satirical romp across our cultural lowlands, but it is also a meditation on the inchoate impulses that lead people to expose themselves, often literally, to the world." —The New York Times Book Review (Editor’s pick)
“...The storytelling is ingenious. Beha infuses the story with rich, potent irony, suggesting how susceptible we are to others’ plotting...Beha gets to have it both ways: His novel is at once brisk and episodic while critiquing the limits of brisk, episodic narrative.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Beha captures in hilarious detail the many insidious ways we rush to cheapen our own identities, and how even as our sense of self veers out of our control, we still never stop trying for some deeper meaning. A funhouse dissection of our current frailties.” —Dana Spiotta