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James Kirkwoods "Good Times/Bad Times".

In the program for A Chorus Line, author Nicholas Dante said that this was his favorite book. It was early Kirkwood and intriguing. A young student is on trial for killing his Headmaster at a New England Boarding school, sort of "A Separate Peace" meets "Catcher in the Rye". Because it's Kirkwood, he clearly sees himself as the young, handsome, virile and irresistible protagonist, but there does seem to be some strange empathy for the closeted Headmaster. Although the book spends a lot of time denying gay feelings between the two students, the gay theme comes full circle when the Headmaster becomes obsessed with the lead character, Peter.

I found it compelling because Kirkwood can weave a story but could also understand how Dante would feel so drawn to it judging from his monologue in ACL. Maybe he and Kirkwood should have made a movie adaptation.

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by Anonymousreply 1May 15, 2024 9:28 PM

Kirkwood's real life provides many insights into his characters. I can't think of the name of the last biography I read, something about ponies and rainbows or something. When he was young there was some suspicion over the death of a Hollywood producer, or maybe a friend of his mother, a silent film actress. Kirkwood said he discovered the body. There's more (Kirkwood's life is a rabbit hole) but it's been a couple of years and I'm fuzzy on details.

by Anonymousreply 1May 15, 2024 9:28 PM
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