When Wikipedia tells me that the first novel from Philipp Meyer, American Rust, is written in a third person stream of consciousness style that is compared to Joyce, Faulkner and Kelman, I think this is going to be a tough book to adapt. I also think how sad it is that I’ve lost touch with modern American lit to the point that the first time I hear of what is apparently a very good book it’s from a fucking trade break.
But if anyone can tackle a very tough adaptation, it might well be Walter Salles and Jose Rivera, who teamed up to make The Motorcycle Diaries, a truly great film about young Che Guevara’s education in socialism. Also, Rivera created Eerie, Indiana, which might make him superhuman and capable of anything.
So what’s this novel they’re adapting? Via Amazon:
Buell, Pennsylvania lies in ruins, a dying–if not already dead–steel
town, where even the lush surrounding country seethes with concealed
industrial toxins. When Isaac English and Billy Poe–a pair of
high-school friends straight out of Steinbeck–embark on a starry-eyed
cross-country escape to California, a violent encounter with a trio of
transients leaves one dead, prying the lid off a rusted can of failed
hope and small-town secrets. American Rust is Philipp Meyer’s
first novel, and his taut, direct prose strikes the perfect tone for
this kaleidoscope of fractured dreams, elevating a book that otherwise
might be relentlessly dour to the level of honest and unflinching
Sounds intriguing. I’m in.