Ever wonder what happened to Ethan Hawke’s smug slacker from Reality Bites? He probably shares cubicle space with Lipsyte’s Milo Burke, a failed painter and porn-lover now working as a development officer for Mediocre University, half-assedly siphoning money out of New York’s wealthy. Although Lipsyte’s testosterone-dripping, very, very funny and dark satire suggests a mid-life crisis unique to Generation X’s white males (“…we were the death of analog. The beginning of aggressively marketed nachos…”), Lipsyte’s tight prose is more akin to Martin Amis than Hot Tub Time Machine. An age-old story of dissatisfaction and failure steeped in contemporary anxieties.

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