"David Shapiro's You're Not Much Use to Anyone seems to me the first example we've seen of the successful transformation of blog into novel: where other such projects have lazily slapped the hash of old online content between hard covers, Shapiro has invented a way to use a set of formal tensions – between the raw and the cooked, the fast and the slow, the urgent and the considered – to say something provocative, new, and very funny about performance, ambition, jealousy, and fear. If Tao Lin had been born to Gary Shteyngart's parents and spent his early twenties slaving for pageviews at NewYorker.com, he would have written something like this, the Bright Lights, Big City of the click-here-now generation." –Gideon Lewis-Kraus, author of A Sense of Wonder
"I read David Shapiro's very funny and deeply moving first novel beginning to end without stopping, delighted and stimulated by its interesting range of endearing characters and the unpretentious, sophisticated, compassionate, insightful voice of the narrator, who I found irresistibly and singularly real: at once playful and vulnerable and charming and harsh, yearning and impulsive, mysterious and relatable. I highly recommend You’re Not Much Use to Anyone." –Tao Lin, author of Shoplifting From American Apparel and Taipei
David is a freshly minted NYU grad who’s working a not-quite-entry-level job, falling in love, and telling his parents he’s studying for the LSAT. He starts a Tumblr blog, typing out posts on his BlackBerry under his desk—a blog that becomes wildly popular and brings him to the attention of major media (The New York Times) as well as the White House. But his outward fame doesn’t quell his confusion about the world and his direction in it.
This semiautobiographical debut is a coming-of-age story perfect for our time. In A Sense of Direction author Gideon Lewis-Kraus’s words, “If Tao Lin had been born to Gary Shteyngart’s parents and spent his early twenties slaving for pageviews at NewYorker.com, he would have written something like this, the Bright Lights, Big City of the click-here-now generation.”