Edwards’ Mistress Rielle Hunter the Model for Character in Gen-X Lit

By Dotcomabc

Aug 9, 2008 10:35am

This may only be of interest to Gen-Xers or fans of the literary brat pack in the 1990s, but it turns out that a fictitious character based on Rielle Hunter, the former mistress of Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C., has been making its way through several novels.

Author Jay McInerney told the New York Post that Alison Poole, the protagonist of his 1988 novel “Story of My Life,” was based on Hunter, whom he dated for a few months in the 1980s back when she was Lisa Druck.

“She’s a nice girl,” McInerney told the Post’s Page Six. “She used to be a real party girl. When she wasn’t out at nightclubs, she was taking acting classes. We dated for only a few months, but in that period, I spent a lot of time with her and her friends, whose behavior intrigued and appalled me to such an extent that I ended up basing a novel on the experience. It was narrated in the first person from the point of view of an ostensibly jaded, sexually voracious 20-year-old who was inspired by Lisa. I certainly thought of Alison Poole as a sympathetic and ultimately endearing character.”

Radar magazine has delved back into the book for ostensibly relevant passages about Poole’s liaisons with men who have “high-powered jobs” and whose “idea of wild is argyle socks,” including “Most of the guys I know have really high-powered jobs and make up for lost time when they’re not in the office. The Berserk After Work Club. I seem to attract them in a big way, all these boys in Paul Stuart suits with six-figure salaries and hellfire on a dimmer switch in their eyes.” Poole also said, “Men. I’ve never met any. They’re all boys.”

New York magazine notes that Poole has also appeared in novels by McInerney’s pal and fellow brat-packer, Bret Easton Ellis, including “American Psycho” and “Glamorama.”

- jpt

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