Book Review of “The Fall of Princes” by Robert Goolrick


I received a free copy of this book from Algonquin publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Summary: The Fall of Princes tells the tale of one man’s rise and fall in the hedonistic world that was 1980’s Wall Street. Money, power, greed, love, lust, sex, drugs, and alcohol provide the all of the interest once could hope for in Goolrick’s latest novel. From the excess and decadence of top of the Street’s food chain to city’s underbelly filled with drugs, hookers, and the beginning of the AIDS crisis, we are spared nothing.

My thoughts:

I am a big fan of Goolrick’s and this book did not disappoint! He writes with such nostalgia you’d bet your first-born you were there, shared the experiences with him, and are also experiencing the longing to be back in the good ‘ole days.  He is able to provide us with protagonists that are so introspective you’ll wonder how anyone could be that in touch with their feelings. In a good way.

Though the experiences in this book provide insight into the extremes of life in 1980’s Manhattan, I felt that Goolrick was able to pull it off in a way that is both historically accurate and still manages to draw you in though you may have heard similar tales of the excesses before.

As for Rooney. our rarely named protagonist, I could relate to him though I share almost nothing in common with him. There is just something about the way his humanity is expressed that makes him likable. Perhaps it’s a perfect balance of good and evil in his actions and intentions mixed with a certain vulnerability that makes me want to see him content though I understand he is not destined to be “happy”. But I think that is the point.

My rating: 5 stars