Pub. Date:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
The Rules of Attraction / Edition 1

The Rules of Attraction / Edition 1

by Bret Easton Ellis
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From the bestselling author or Less Than Zero and American Psycho, The Rules of Attraction is a startlingly funny, kaleidoscopic novel about three students at a small, affluent liberal-arts college in New England with no plans for the future--or even the present--who become entangled in a curious romantic triangle. Bret Easton Ellis trains his incisive gaze on the kids at self-consciously bohemian Camden College and treats their sexual posturings and agonies with a mixture of acrid hilarity and compassion while exposing the moral vacuum at the center of their lives.

Lauren changes boyfriends every time she changes majors and still pines for Victor who split for Europe months ago and she might or might not be writing anonymous love letter to ambivalent, hard-drinking Sean, a hopeless romantic who only has eyes for Lauren, even if he ends up in bed with half the campus, and Paul, Lauren's ex, forthrightly bisexual and whose passion masks a shrewd pragmatism. They waste time getting wasted, race from Thirsty Thursday Happy Hours to Dressed To Get Screwed parties to drinks at The Edge of the World or The Graveyard. The Rules of Attraction is a poignant, hilarious take on the death of romance. 

The basis for the major motion picture starring James Van Der Beek, Shannyn Sossamon, Jessica Biel, and Kate Bosworth.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 2900679781485
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/28/1998
Series: Vintage Contemporaries Series
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)

About the Author

Bret Easton Ellis is the author of Less Than Zero, The Rules of Attraction, American Psycho, The Informers, GlamoramaLunar Park, and Imperial Bedrooms. His works have been translated into twenty-seven languages. Less Than Zero, The Rules of Attraction, American Psycho, and The Informers have all been made into films. He lives in Los Angeles.

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The Rules of Attraction 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 95 reviews.
Ninja_Dog More than 1 year ago
In this novel, Ellis establishes the universe of characters for his more gruesome and surreal novels, "Amecian Psycho" and "Glamorama." Considered his most lighthearted novel, "The Rules of Attraction" still manages a level of darkness and inevitability. Each chapter is written from different perspectives of students at Camden college, the fictional analogue to Ellis' own East Coast alma mater. The three main characters constitute a twisted romantic triangle that's both petty and destructive. Sean Bateman (the brother of American Psycho's Patric Bateman) is infatuated with Lauren (the Lauren Hynde from Glamorama). Lauren fails to get over her love for Victor (the same Victor that's Glamorama's protagonist) while getting involved with Sean... and several others. Paul adds another layer to the conflict, sharing history with Lauren and becoming infatuated with Sean. Like with "Less Than Zero," the characters in this novel fail to learn from their moral shortcomings. While a "heroic" story will have morally flawed characters learn and grow from their trials, such is not the case in an Ellis novel. This story starts out reprehensible and just gets more destructive from there. Conflicts and pathologies totally lack resolution throughout and the novel ends with a broken, unfinished sentence, underscoring the finality of their collective drama. Despite the darkness of the plot structure, "The Rules Of Attraction" boasts some extremely funny chapters, including a chapter by Sean's French roommate written entirely in French. Getting a translation is well worth it, as his whining and arrogant love letter to Lauren is genuinely funny. Sean also has a chapter where he discusses a relationship with a hippie that I laughed out loud at several times. Both the moral depravity and the black humor of this novel are something of an embryonic necessity for this young author, suggesting the greater works of American Psycho and Glamorama that will follow this novel. While not "great" on it's own, I recommend that anyone interested in Ellis read this short novel before trying to tackle the gut-wrenching masterpiece of "American Psycho" or the existential nightmare of "Glamorama."
Katanahun More than 1 year ago
I first read this book when I was twelve years old. The book was rather dark, but I thought that was a plus. I fell in love with all of the characters, and connected to all of them. Easton Ellis can capture emotion, and come up with three beautiful and out-of-the-ordinary characters that are easy to see yourself in. After reading, I saw relationships from a different perspective, and I still do. Buy this book now.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This hilariously realistic story is about as dark as they get, but in this depressive college dating story you find a tapestry of interesting characters leading entertaining lives and telling intertwining stories. In this story, the people who want to hook up with each other rarely do, and when they do it isn't usually what they thought it would be. Very few other romance stories actually leave you feeling that it is a believable story. This one people can relate to. Another good one is Christmas at Sibyl's. A friend bought it for me and it's now one of my favorite Christmas stories.
Magadri on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. I started reading it after seeing the movie, and I was not disappointed. I sped through this book in no time. I loved the characters, the way the narratives shift, and the overall style of the book. My first Ellis novel, but not my last.
TiffanyHickox on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The individual narratives drive this book off the edge of sobriety and into the world of laissez-faire sex, drugs and miscommunication of over-privledged college students. This novel is an interesting study on how individual interpretation can at times make navigating personal relationships a hazardous endeavor, especially when alcohol, drugs and beautiful youth are all on deck. The themes are classic and will resonate with the college students of today just as much as those who attended college anytime in the last 60 years (though some of the music references may be lost). Worth reading and quite different from the movie, which is also recommended.
amanda4242 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book. The shifting point of view can be a little jarring at times, but seeing the same events through the eyes of different characters gives you more insight into them. My favorite scene is when Paul and his mother are talking in a hotel bar: up until this point we have only seen her through Paul¿s less than sympathetic eyes, but Ellis switches to her p.o.v. for this scene and you see that she truly cares for and worries about her son. If you liked the movie, read the book; it¿s a thousand times better.
ishtahar on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
In a nutshell the story of a bisexual love triangle, with added misinformation, misidentity, self-obsession, utter lack of self respect, emotional blackmail, immaturity, drink, drugs and the ability to always remind me why I hated university so much!
Darrol on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
More drug use and pointless sex. A little more plot due to being set on a college campus.
worldsedge on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What passes for a plot is an utter mess, the narrative shifts from character to character about every third paragraph, yet Ellis is such an astute observer and has such a way with words sometimes that this book isn't a total loss. The three main characters, Paul, Lauren Sean basically do nothing the entire book but go to parties and have sex. Gay sex, straight sex, group sex, drunken and drugged sex. A liberal arts college where nobody appears to go to class, ever, where unending drug use and casual sex is the norm...I now curse myself for going to a state college and majoring in business. Then again, I vaguely remember reading that people at Bennington (his alma mater) were rather annoyed by the way "Camden" was presented, so perhaps we've got a not so accurate presentation.At one point the narrative shifts to Patrick Bateman, main character of American Psycho. No hint of a serial killer here, he is simply tut-tutting about his younger brother Sean. Very odd.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vrry weird
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