Description: When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they’re broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their center of gravity. Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realize, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he’ll not only be unable to overcome—but that will define his life forever.
Opening: Lispenard Street: THE ELEVENTH APARTMENT had only one closet, but it did have a sliding glass door that opened onto a small balcony, from which he could see a man sitting across the way, outdoors in only a T-shirt and shorts even though it was October, smoking.
Malcolm – a struggling architect from a wealthy family of biracial parentage
Willem – an actor and orphan, whose parents were Danish and Swedish
JB – a painter of Haitian descent
Jude – a lawyer and orphan, of ambiguous origin
Thomas Hardy also wrote a pot-boiler about a Dude named Jude which was slit-wrist gloomy. Jude the Dude by Hanagihara is self-hurt gloomy, and the end result is the same. I must say though, I much prefer Hardy.