The Confessions of Edward Day

The Confessions of Edward Day

by Valerie Martin
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The Confessions of Edward Day 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
mandersj More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. Maybe I'm sick of reading celebrity "tell-alls" or formulaic murder mysteries, but "The Confessions of Edward Day" kept me up late at night relishing the vivid imagery, not wanting to put the book down even though I knew I should be sleeping instead. Set largely in the 1970s New York City theatre scene, where working actors struggled to make a living, struggled to figure out their characters and struggled to have personal lives, Edward Day recalls these days when he was in his early 20s as he is present-day looking back on that time. Edward found his calling in college when he decided to major in acting. His friends were also actors who liked to hang out with each other and discuss the current plays and roles available at the time. One weekend Edward and a group of actor friends went away for the weekend to the Jersey shore, where Edward hooked up with the lovely Madeleine, an actress whom he'd had his eye on for some time. Immediately after their initial coupling, Edward decided to take a walk along the pier. While leaning on the railing, debating his future and remembering his recent past, he accidentally fell over the railing into the ocean. Caught in the current, Edward began screaming for help. Luckily, a passerby was able to jump in and save him. When Edward came to on the beach, he realized the man who saved him looked quite familiar. In fact, he rather looked like a version of himself. Edward realized the man was named Guy Margate, another actor whom does look remarkably like Edward. The entire rest of the weekend, and in fact for years to come, Edward and Guy compete for Madeleine's affection, as well as for many roles when they get back to New York. The competition at time fuels Edward, at times emotionally defeats him. Guy never allows Edward to forget the debt which he is owed, and often uses it to get one up on Edward. After the weekend in New Jersey, Edward and Madeleine become a couple. Throughout the years, Edward, Madeleine and Guy come together and drift apart, all the while never far from each others' minds. Success and hardship follow each of the three in different manners. The end of the book delivers the majority of Edward's confessions, told as honestly as he can remember, detailing how they have affected the lives of all three main characters. The story is consuming and does not disappoint. Extremely well-written with the ability to draw the reader in and evoke emotion, this is one of my new favorites and I will definitely be looking into other books by this author.
alisons-bookmarks More than 1 year ago
This fictional memoir surprised and amazed me. Valerie Martin vividly captures the life of an actor in New York in the 1970s. This was a time when actors were clammoring to get in class with Sandy Meisner, Stella Adler, and Uta Hagen, and sat over drinks discussing nothing but their methods, their motivations and their roles. Edward Day takes us on his journey to find truth in his life, and, thus, truth in his acting. Actors are a strange breed, and Valerie Martin gave us as accurate a portrait as one could hope without spilling over into stereotypes or hyperbole. As someone who has poured over Hagen's Respect for Acting, and Meisner's On Acting, it's no mystery why I got completely swept up in The Confessions of Edward Day. I spent a wee bit of time in New York studying acting, and I used to talk with my fellow actors, all of us in awe over New York in the 1970s. Valerie Martin transports us to that time effortlessly. Edward Day is on a quest in search of truth in his acting, which,, according to Stella Adler, he should find in the truth of his life. Every conversation, every gesture, every laugh, and every emotion he has in life, he dissects and files away for use in his work. If that is how he lives his life, how can that be truthful? But this is the life of an actor, narcisistic to the core. Even if you aren't an actor, or don't watch Inside the Actor's Studio, it's fascinating to follow Edward Day from his growing career to his love affairs, with Guy Margate lurking in the wings of both. For the 20+ years of this memoir, Ed is never able to shake Guy, the man who saved his life. At what point is that debt repaid? Beyond the actor's story, this novel is downright dark and creepy, and I loved every minute of it.