Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux on November 15, 2005
Genres: General Fiction
A ruthless dissection of American life in the late 1960s, Play It as It Lays captures the mood of an entire generation, the ennui of contemporary society reflected in spare prose that blisters and haunts the reader. Set in a place beyond good and evil - literally in Hollywood, Las Vegas, and the barren wastes of the Mojave Desert, but figuratively in the landscape of an arid soul - it remains more than three decades after its original publication a profoundly disturbing novel, riveting in its exploration of a woman and a society in crisis and stunning in the still-startling intensity of its prose.
I try to find at least one positive thing to say when writing a negative review, but with Play it as it Lays by Joan Didion I am coming up blank. The characters were all so unlikable and shallow with images of the Kardashians coming to mind. Due to the lack of caring for anyone in the novel and therefore difficult to read. The novel was very well written and the chapters were short, that and the fact that it was a book club selection were the only things that kept me reading. Play it as it Lays does take place in the 1960s, many years before I was even a thought so, I wondered if maybe if I could have related to the time period it may have been more tolerable, but I honestly doubt it.