Allison Burnett, Carroll & Graf.
Troop, a middle-aged, witty, bipolar, alcoholic homosexual, lives alone
in a cramped New York apartment. His life is turned upside down when
his best friend dies and leaves him her Manhattan
brownstone. To afford the property tax, B.K. turns his new home into
a colony for young, struggling artists, to whom he can serve as mentor,
if not muse. He christens the place the House Beautiful.
The House Beautiful tells the story of a fateful summer when a young man named Adrian Malloy arrives at B.K.'s door, lugging a suitcase and dragging a garbage bag crammed with what B.K. presumes to be odes and sonnets. Overjoyed to have found a new poet, B.K. sweeps Adrian into his home and under his wing.
At once hilarious, romantic, wise, and lunatic, The House Beautiful tells the story not only of B.K.'s emerging friendship with Adrian, but of all the artists' adventures that summer, as they struggle to make art and love.
Unqueering the Deal
by Allison Burnett
Rainbownetwork.com, October, 2006
The House Beautiful - “The Greenwich Village demimonde never seemed so demented... The plot here is dandy, mainly along the lines of speed-freak French farce. But the true joy is Troop’s champagne-giddy language and his besotted love for his houseful of bohemians.
Armistead Maupin on laughing gas.” -- Kirkus Review
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“[Burnett] skillfully handles multiple story lines, and he has a strong gift for wit -- Troop's opening prologue, addressed to critics of his previous novel, is a thesaurus-fueled riot that could give a Bulwer-Lytton judge heartburn. ...The novel is sweet and at times even wise, a celebration of la vie bohème.” -- Library Journal Review
"The House Beautiful is perfectly timed to dispel the gloom of some endless gray afternoon this winter.”... -- Cleveland Plain Dealer
Advocate Magazine’s “Hot Pick!”
“Adrian moves to New York on a personal quest. He rents a room from the mentally ill, alcoholic, and gay B.K. Troop, who pays his taxes by renting rooms to struggling artists. Full of great characters, charming devices, and happy endings for all, this novel is one of the best of the fall season.” -- OutSmart Magazine
I give it 5 stars out of 5. -- Lamda Rising
In the end, The House Beautiful is something of a Romantic paean to the powers of love and art... it’s enormously satisfying—and Troop is the kind of creation careers are made on. -- Frontiers
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The story is finely told, with the same fanfare and pageantry that made B.K. Troop shine on the first go-round....
-- The Bay Area Reporter
"In this age when the genuine comic novel seems to be an extinct species, Allison Burnett gives us reason to rejoice. The House Beautiful is a wonderfully funny return trip to the world of B.K. Troop, one of the most appealing characters ever put on a page." -- Charles Busch
"The House Beautiful is a wonderfully inappropriate title for a tale of such inspired insanity and unsettling truth. Allison Burnett's witty asides gather force and, joining with his insights, reduce the reader to fits of laughter. Burnett is an electrifying and ambitious wordsmith and a new voice among American writers - - a maddening master you need to read." --Andy Behrman, author of Electroboy: A Memoir of Mania“
I would love to smoke cigarettes with the wise, witty, and outrageous B.K. Troop, while we swap stories about love, art, and the high cost of living.” -- Carol Wolper, author of The Cigarette Girl
"B.K. Troop is that rarest find: an unexpected and entirely engaging new character. It is B.K.'s voice his allusions, fulminations, deprecations, and ultimately his hapless, hopeless romanticism that makes this fine first novel such an enjoyable romp." -- Seduced by a Literary Original by Robin Russin, Los Angeles Times
Hilariously repugnant.... B.K. is exquisitely realized.... -- Publishers Weekly