Much teen-age angst, spread on with a trowel, from first-novelist Buchsbaum. ""Maybe there's no one who really cares about...

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Much teen-age angst, spread on with a trowel, from first-novelist Buchsbaum. ""Maybe there's no one who really cares about knowing the real me,"" says the 18-year-old narrator--Deed Smith of New Orleans--as he's talking to his therapist. Earnestly, as he always does. But Deed has had a hard time: his mother died in a car accident; his father stole his girlfriend; his best friend, Jason. died of autoerotic asphyxia while trying for a new high in masturbation: and Deed's other admired buddy, Chip, OD'd (before Deed's very eyes) in the local hamburger joint. So before you can say Ordinary People, Deed tries to shave his wrists a little too close and is soon up before the Suicide Counseling Group wondering about the real him. The story continues, as Deed wanders in and out of poetic adolescent despair--at one point he feels an ""urgent need"" to read Sylvia Plath--dumps his old girlfriend, finds a new one in the counseling group, and then matures enough to help her work through her own suicide attempt: ""She needs to find the truth. She has to do it alone, she has to be alone with it, Deed. You can't help her."" At novel's end, drug-free, reconciled with his father, he and his also-recovering girlfriend walk hand in hand through the zoo. Stodgy, preachy, movie-of-the-week fare, despite the Less Than Zero, teen-ager underworld trappings.

Pub Date: March 30, 1988

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 1988