Boomer1

Boomer1

Bluegrass musician, former journalist and editor, and now PhD in English, Mark Brumfeld has arrived at his thirties with significant debt and no steady prospects. His girlfriend Cassie—a punk bassist in an all-female band, who fled her Midwestern childhood for a new identity—finds work at a “new media” company. When Cassie refuses his marriage proposal, Mark leaves New Yor...

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Title:Boomer1
Author:Daniel Torday
Rating:

Boomer1 Reviews

  • Elyse

    I enjoyed this a lot - just finished it now - at 3am- with no idea where it was headed.

    Mark - Cassie - Julia - each have a voice in this fascinating- relevant and frightening look at people ‘my age’ - 60’s retirement age -

    and my daughter’s age - mid 30’s -

    and the contribution our grandparents made who came from the War—

    It’s a terrific book ....lots to engage in — great storytelling. Themes - locations and daily life for these folks are tied together brilliantly:

    - Jobs-

    - who has them?

    - who does

    I enjoyed this a lot - just finished it now - at 3am- with no idea where it was headed.

    Mark - Cassie - Julia - each have a voice in this fascinating- relevant and frightening look at people ‘my age’ - 60’s retirement age -

    and my daughter’s age - mid 30’s -

    and the contribution our grandparents made who came from the War—

    It’s a terrific book ....lots to engage in — great storytelling. Themes - locations and daily life for these folks are tied together brilliantly:

    - Jobs-

    - who has them?

    - who doesn’t?

    - social security?

    - insecurity?

    - Education/ music/ girlband/ bandmates/ roommates/ lovers/relationships/success/ failure/ personal self worth/disappointments/ fear/ depression & loneliness/ hearing loss/ a marriage proposal turned down/ educated adult moving back home in parents basement/ East Coast..New York City/ West Coast... San Francisco...

    ...More surprises... with great characters to spend time with!!!!

    This is a wonderful - very well written enjoyable novel. I must read Daniel Torday’s first novel. I have a copy of the hardcopy - and will look forward to it now for sure.

    Highly recommended!

    Thank you St. Martin’s Press, Netgalley, and Daniel Torday! (Love the feeling of intimacy in your writing)

  • Amy Gennaro

    Thank you to St. Martin's Press, the author, and NetGalley for giving me this ARC in exchange for my candid review.

    Wow! Tough book to review.

    I actually hated the book at first because it was an unadulterated attack on Baby Boomers and all that they have accomplished. And a call to arms for them to all retire, so that Millenials can take the good jobs.

    At that point in the book---I wanted to rip through the pages and smack the sh%& out of the characters for being whiney babies and not underst

    Thank you to St. Martin's Press, the author, and NetGalley for giving me this ARC in exchange for my candid review.

    Wow! Tough book to review.

    I actually hated the book at first because it was an unadulterated attack on Baby Boomers and all that they have accomplished. And a call to arms for them to all retire, so that Millenials can take the good jobs.

    At that point in the book---I wanted to rip through the pages and smack the sh%& out of the characters for being whiney babies and not understanding that nothing was handed to the Baby Boomers---we worked hard for it.

    But then it started to point out some of the crazy social, technological, and societal things that the Millenials are doing. And so it became a reflection on the struggles from both generations. And the practical decisions that were made by some of the most idealistic and artistic members of each generation.

    It pointed out the scope and the influence that instant information technology can have---both for good and for very,very bad. One line resonated with me...."Technology was addictive when it was working, but when technology wasn't working, it was more addictive than heroin."

    So, it would be a great book for Baby Boomers, Gen Xers and Millenials all to read. It actually became very thought-provoking when the whole story unfolded.

    I would give this book high marks. Read it--it will make you think about society's evolution.

  • Jill

    As a proud Boomer who intends to work ‘til I drop, Boomer1 was—well, a mite unsettling. As it is intended to be. Putting myself in the head of a disgruntled millennial who blames the Baby Boomers for the poor job market took some getting used to. But once I bought into the concept, I thought the book was brilliant.

    It’s narrated from three perspectives—Mark Brumfeld, whose life isn’t turning out the way he thought it would, his love interest Cassie, a bluegrass bassist who discovers a hidden tale

    As a proud Boomer who intends to work ‘til I drop, Boomer1 was—well, a mite unsettling. As it is intended to be. Putting myself in the head of a disgruntled millennial who blames the Baby Boomers for the poor job market took some getting used to. But once I bought into the concept, I thought the book was brilliant.

    It’s narrated from three perspectives—Mark Brumfeld, whose life isn’t turning out the way he thought it would, his love interest Cassie, a bluegrass bassist who discovers a hidden talent for editing native content in social media, and Mark’s mother Julia, a one-time (dare we say?) hippie who is now a suburban wife and mother. Mark—aka Isaac Abramson aka Boomer1—moves into his mom’s basement and creates a series of videos advocating the forceful retirement of boomers, ending with: “Resist much, obey little. Propaganda by the deed. Boom boom.”

    There is true hilarity here in the targeting of boomer icons (Oprah, anyone?) But Daniel Torday does not let his narrative dissolve into slapstick. Despite the absurd plot, these are believable characters who could easily be perceived as existing in the real world. The emotions and milieu of the today—seeking a scapegoat for one’s own failings, getting lost in the Internet culture, having one foot firmly planted in what is expected of us and the other wavering into unexplored ground of what we really want to do—all this is mined here. Millennial cynicism and ennui clashes with boomer self-righteousness.

    And it’s all great fun. Except when it isn’t. There is a yearning in these put-upon characters and, if there is not generational domestic terrorism, there is at least generational envy and resentment. The book has a lot to say and it says it well. Don’t expect a fast read but do expect an enlightening one. Boom boom.

  • Paul

    Daniel Torday’s Boomer1 is a very good novel that focuses on what people do to maintain relationships and to stick to their ideals, even in the face of hypocrisy. Even with some flaws, Torday’s ideas are genuine and hold important questions for the current generation. I enjoyed Boomer1 and will definitely recommend it.

    Thank you to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press, and Daniel Torday for the advanced copy for review.

    Full review can be found here:

    Please check o

    Daniel Torday’s Boomer1 is a very good novel that focuses on what people do to maintain relationships and to stick to their ideals, even in the face of hypocrisy. Even with some flaws, Torday’s ideas are genuine and hold important questions for the current generation. I enjoyed Boomer1 and will definitely recommend it.

    Thank you to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press, and Daniel Torday for the advanced copy for review.

    Full review can be found here:

    Please check out all my reviews:

  • Esil

    3+ stars

    What to say about Boomer1? The story focuses on the apparent generational divide between baby boomers and millennials. Mark has tried to make it as an academic and journalist in New York, but he’s ended up back in his parents’ basement in the Midwest. He reinvents himself as a raging millennial, posting video diatribes about how it’s time for baby boomers to cede their place to millennials, ending each diatribe with “boom boom”. Meanwhile, Mark’s ex-girlfriend Cassie is climbing the rank

    3+ stars

    What to say about Boomer1? The story focuses on the apparent generational divide between baby boomers and millennials. Mark has tried to make it as an academic and journalist in New York, but he’s ended up back in his parents’ basement in the Midwest. He reinvents himself as a raging millennial, posting video diatribes about how it’s time for baby boomers to cede their place to millennials, ending each diatribe with “boom boom”. Meanwhile, Mark’s ex-girlfriend Cassie is climbing the ranks of a new media company and his mother is becoming an inward looking recluse as her hearing deteriorates. I thought Boomer1 was well written and it kept me reading, but I ended up feeling somewhat dissatisfied. It felt like a polemic but I’m not sure what the lesson was. I know I wasn’t necessarily meant to warm up to these characters, but I found myself not caring for them much at all. And the end was odd. Something big happens but we never circle back to get Mark’s perspective. Or maybe that’s the point. Who knows! The + in my rating reflects the good writing. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.

  • Cheri

    !! NOW AVAILABLE !!

    --

    The Rolling Stones, Songwriters: Keith Richards / Mick Jagger

    Boy meets girl. Boy lives with girl. Boy falls in love with girl. Boy proposes to girl. Girl walks away. Boy loses job. Boy moves home with parents. Boy becomes Boomer1 online. Boy rants online about baby boomers having “all the jobs.” Boy incites radica

    !! NOW AVAILABLE !!

    --

    The Rolling Stones, Songwriters: Keith Richards / Mick Jagger

    Boy meets girl. Boy lives with girl. Boy falls in love with girl. Boy proposes to girl. Girl walks away. Boy loses job. Boy moves home with parents. Boy becomes Boomer1 online. Boy rants online about baby boomers having “all the jobs.” Boy incites radical movement.

    Cassie Black, née Claire Stankowitcz, began her first year at Wellesley under her new name, and she began to change, as well, as the year passed. A former violin student, she joined a punk band, and as the years passed, the band made plans to live in Brooklyn. Through playing gigs in one spot, they made connections to get gigs in another until one night they end up playing CBGB, a club in the East Village where bigger names had played. It is at this club that Cassie and Mark meet, and find they have a common love of bluegrass. At the time, Cassie was in a relationship with her bandmate Natalia, which quickly crumbles away.

    And so boy meets girl. Boy lives with girl. Boy falls in love with girl. Girl is happy. Temporarily…

    Mark Brumfeld has plans to meet up with Cassie one night when his band was playing at Pete’s Candy Store, playing mostly traditional bluegrass music, with a diamond burning a hole in his pocket, and dreams for their future.

    When his plans turn to so much shite, and continue to roll downhill very quickly, he not only loses the girl, his journalistic career is caught up in the mudslide that his life has become and plops him down in the basement of his parents’ house. Home again, home again…

    Since he can’t see the connections that led to any of this, and he’s understandably frustrated, angry, and so he begins an online rant which turns into a radical movement with an aim targeting the baby boomers, calling himself Boomer1.

    His mother, Julia, a woman who was also a musician in her life before marriage and childbirth, living in the Haight in the days we all associate with the Haight, the era of the 60s, when rock ‘n roll took on another level beyond “The Twist.” She could never have imagined that her son would return home, but then what is a mother to do?

    Reading much of this felt as though I was trapped in a room with someone ranting at me about the baby boomer generation having “all the jobs.” There is a lot of “telling” that feels more like yelling, and not enough “showing,” which is why I’m not rating this one higher – not only because the telling was more like yelling, but because it felt as if it was almost all “telling,” I never felt anything for most of these characters. There are, occasionally, some lovely passages, reflecting on life, but they were too few and too far between for me.

    Pub Date: 18 SEP 2018

    Many thanks for the ARC provided by St. Martin’s Press.

  • Larry H

    I'm between 3 and 3.5 stars.

    A fascinating, timely, and thought-provoking meditation on the craziness of our internet-obsessed culture, the generational divide between Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials, and just how far our lives can drift from what we've planned, Daniel Torday's

    is both funny and eerily prescient.

    Mark is a bluegrass musician, a journalist and editor, and a student completing his PhD in English. He hopes to find fame as an insightful political writer, although

    I'm between 3 and 3.5 stars.

    A fascinating, timely, and thought-provoking meditation on the craziness of our internet-obsessed culture, the generational divide between Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials, and just how far our lives can drift from what we've planned, Daniel Torday's

    is both funny and eerily prescient.

    Mark is a bluegrass musician, a journalist and editor, and a student completing his PhD in English. He hopes to find fame as an insightful political writer, although he wouldn't mind if his band hit it big either. When he meets Cassie, a fellow musician, who plays bass in an all-female post-punk band, he feels like he has met a kindred spirit, especially when he discovers Cassie knows how to play the fiddle as well. The two embark on a relationship, which brings both security, if not wild passion.

    But as Cassie's media career starts to take off, Mark finds himself at a dead end, which doesn't help their struggling relationship much. After she rejects Mark's marriage proposal, he's left with no prospects, career- or otherwise. With no money and nowhere else to turn, Mark decides to live the Millennial stereotype—he moves home to Baltimore to live in his parents' basement.

    As he starts figuring out his future, his anger grows, so he adopts a pseudonym and starts filming a series of online video rants against baby boomers. The so-called Boomer Missives tap into a vein in society, of people stuck in the same rut he is, feeling the same feelings, and wanting to find someone else to blame. But before he knows it, these videos become a rallying cry for those who feel downtrodden, put upon, and want their chance without having to wait to pay their dues. Suddenly, he goes from spokesperson to revolutionary—with potentially dangerous consequences.

    Narrated alternatively by Mark, Cassie, and Mark's mother Julia, a child of the 1960s who thought her life would be much more rebellious than it turned out,

    delivers quite a punch. There are times when it almost doesn't seem like fiction, because you could totally see something like this happening in today's world.

    This is a very well-written book, but I found the pacing really slow. Although I've seen other reviews say that things started to pick up, it didn't for me. I definitely enjoyed the story, but I just wanted things to move quicker, and I wanted to like the characters a bit more, but the book certainly gave me a lot to think about.

    If you like a dose of reality mixed in with your fiction,

    may be just the ticket for you. It will definitely get you thinking!

    NetGalley and St. Martin's Press provided me an advance copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks for making this available!

    See all of my reviews at

    , or check out my list of the best books I read in 2017 at

    .

  • ☮Karen

    St. Martins Press comped me this copy, and I thank them.

    So, I can tell you this story is about two young adults, Cassie from Ohio who changed her name before moving to New York City, and Mark, who as a side job plays in a band with Cassie and loves her very much. Cassie won't marry him, because she really prefers women, although Mark is clueless. They both have poorly paying day jobs and are barely subsisting, and Mark blames his lack of success on the Baby Boomer generation as a whole, because

    St. Martins Press comped me this copy, and I thank them.

    So, I can tell you this story is about two young adults, Cassie from Ohio who changed her name before moving to New York City, and Mark, who as a side job plays in a band with Cassie and loves her very much. Cassie won't marry him, because she really prefers women, although Mark is clueless. They both have poorly paying day jobs and are barely subsisting, and Mark blames his lack of success on the Baby Boomer generation as a whole, because none of them will retire like they're expected to so that Mark can have a crack at their high-paying jobs. The more Mark thinks about this, in fact, the more convinced he is that this is the source of all his problems, and he is quite angry. He ends up unemployed, living in his parents' basement, and becomes an on-line celebrity called Boomer1 with some crazy, batshit ideas about how to get Boomers to retire or die.

    I enjoyed Cassie immensely, who by the way becomes quite a successful executive in the techy field (oh, the irony). But Julia (Mark's mom) seemed an afterthought who contributed little to the story. And Mark was just an idiot of epic proportions whose chapters I skimmed over because they were just... plain... frustrating.

    I think this was satire but not very funny, in my personal opinion, and also was, IMO, utter nonsense. Let's just say I am probably not the target audience for this one and perhaps I didn't get it?

  • Carol

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