Checker and the Derailleurs (Contemporary American Fiction) by Lionel Shriver

By Lionel Shriver

Attractive and charismatic, nineteen-year-old Checker Secretti is the main talented and unique drummer that the club-goers of Astoria, Queens, have ever heard. while he performs, conundrums appear to clear up themselves, very good suggestions are evoked, and fall in love. The participants of his band, The Derailleurs, are passionately dedicated to their guiding spirit, as are all who fall less than Checker’s spell. but if one other drummer, Eaton Striker, hears the prodigy play, he's pulled inexorably into Checker’s orbit by means of a robust mixture of envy and admiration. quickly The Derailleurs, too, are torn aside through latent jealousies that Eaton does his utmost to carry alive. “A bittersweet, swish, poetic, but clear-sighted vision....A story approximately reliable and evil, and in regards to the promise and discomfort of being nineteen.” – Cleveland simple broker “More compelling even than the plot turns are Shriver’s insights into human nature....Checker and The Derailleurs, like its beguiling protagonist, is difficult to forget.” – humans

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Extra info for Checker and the Derailleurs (Contemporary American Fiction)

Example text

Trying to rub the window cleaner, Rahim stood up on his toes and took a step closer; his foot missed and he tumbled off the can. The barrel itself fell and made a terrific crash, for it seems the whole container was filled to the brim with bits of broken glass. Checker laughed softly and helped him up. Together they began to throw the glass back in the barrel. ” said Checker, still laughing, when Rahim tossed a piece in the can and it smashed loudly hitting bottom. ” and pulled back. Rahim didn’t have a chance to ask what had happened before he looked up to find a molten glob pointed menacingly at him on the end of a metal pole.

Eaton felt the victim of a great lack of generosity. He may not have ever experienced genuine, spontaneous acclaim, but he knew this wasn’t it. When Eaton sat down for the next set the drums glared at him like prison labor. Eaton outdid himself. The toms tippled in their brackets; the bass edged gradually from his foot; the Zildjian-K’s began to tremble from the shadow of his hand. He broke five hickory drumsticks. The guitarist suggested they do a slow song and let the girl sing. Rachel DeBruin had a sweet, mournful presence that could surely calm the band down, and maybe the crowd, now growing unruly.

And everyone looked so happy! The band and the audience together swayed on the tide of Checker Secretti’s rolling snare. How does he do it? Even the little singer, a perpetually dolorous girl by all appearances, had a quiet glow, like a night-light. Eaton actually wondered for one split second, since he knew percussion better than anyone in the club, why he wasn’t the happiest person here. But that moment passed, and had such a strange quality that he didn’t even retain a memory of it, until Eaton was left at the end of the last set wishing to plant Plato’s and everyone in it three miles deep in the Atlantic, safely buried below schools of barracuda, in airtight drums like toxic waste.

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