Niagara Falls all over Again by Elizabeth McCracken

About the book

Spanning the waning years of vaudeville and the golden age of Hollywood, Niagara Falls All Over Again chronicles a flawed, passionate friendship over thirty years, weaving a powerful story of family and love, grief and loss. In it, McCracken introduces her most singular and affecting hero: Mose Sharp—son, brother, husband, father, friend … and straight man to the fat guy in baggy pants who utterly transforms his life.
To the paying public, Mose Sharp was the arch, colorless half of the comedy team Carter and Sharp. To his partner, he was charmed and charming, a confirmed bachelor who never failed at love and romance. To his father and sisters, Mose was a prodigal son. And in his own heart and soul, he would always be a boy who once had a chance to save a girl’s life—a girl who would be his first, and greatest, loss.
Born into a Jewish family in small-town Iowa, the only boy among six sisters, Mose Sharp couldn’t leave home soon enough. By sixteen Mose had already joined the vaudeville circuit. But he knew one thing from the start: “I needed a partner,” he recalls. “I had always needed a partner.”
Then, an ebullient, self-destructive comedian named Rocky Carter came crashing into his life—and a thirty-year partnership was born. But as the comedy team of Carter and Sharp thrived from the vaudeville backwaters to Broadway to Hollywood, a funny thing happened amid the laughter: It was Mose who had all the best lines offstage.
Rocky would go through money, women, and wives in his restless search for love; Mose would settle down to a family life marked by fragile joy and wrenching tragedy. And soon, cracks were appearing in their complex relationship … until one unforgivable act leads to another and a partnership begins to unravel.

Reviewed by Goodworth Clatford W I Reading Group:

Enjoyed by some – cliché by others. Self centred characters. Wanting to read others by the same author.

Star rating: **

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2 thoughts on “Niagara Falls all over Again by Elizabeth McCracken”

  1. Review by Blackwater Valley U3A Reading Group:
    We enjoyed aspects of this book, especially the Sharp family relationships but also found it depressing in that the two main characters did not achieve their potential and the ending was sad.
    Star rating: **


  2. Only finished by a small minority. The book seemed to span so much:-Jewish family life, vaudeville , Holywood to mention a few. Fascinating subjects in themselves but we were left feeing a bit “short changed” and would have preferred more on less topics. It was hard to find a character to like or even empathise with.


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