Books like Lush Life

Lush Life

2008, Richard Price


Lush Life is a contemporary social novel by Richard Price. It is Price's eighth novel, and was published in 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

The book is set in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and begins with a crime that at first seems straightforward, but quickly expands into a thicket of complications. On the way home from a night of drinking, three men—cafe manager Eric Cash, bartender Ike Marcus, and a friend of Marcus'—are accosted by two muggers. Marcus is shot and killed, in a manner echoing the real-life murder of Nicole duFresne. NYPD Detective Matty Clark winds up investigating the crime, and keeping an eye on Ike's distraught father Billy, whose behavior becomes increasingly erratic. Cash is initially arrested for the crime, but later released when the accounts of other witnesses back up his own; his own behavior is affected as he has difficulty coping with the memory of the incident and the stresses of the police interrogation. Interwoven with the main plot are vignettes of the Lower East Side and the waves of immigrants that have come through there and lived in its tenements over the years.

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