Customer Reviews for

An Object of Beauty: A Novel

Average Rating 3.5
( 302 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(72)

4 Star

(93)

3 Star

(74)

2 Star

(36)

1 Star

(27)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

15 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

Thought provoking

Art writer Daniel Frank of the Stockbridge, Massachusetts Franks is bone marrow weary of his 24/7 thoughts about his amoral former lover Lacey Yeager. He knows she will sleep with anyone to get a head. In hopes of purging her from his blood, he writes down his thought...
Art writer Daniel Frank of the Stockbridge, Massachusetts Franks is bone marrow weary of his 24/7 thoughts about his amoral former lover Lacey Yeager. He knows she will sleep with anyone to get a head. In hopes of purging her from his blood, he writes down his thoughts about the rise and rise of Lacey Yeager in the upscale Manhattan art world.

In the Clintonian Era, twenty-three years old beautiful Lacey Yeager obtains an entry level job as a Sotheby staffer. The intelligent and ambitious Lacey quickly rises up in rank in the company's normally glacial pace. As she did at Sothby's to obtain promotions, Lacey uses her body and brain to obtain a position at exclusive Barton Talley's gallery of "Very Expensive Paintings"; ethics is for the hogs and legalities is for the frightened losers. Finally she achieves her objective of opening up the Lacey Yeager gallery in Chelsea and even 9/11 fails to prevent her meteoric rise to the troposphere of the high priced art universe.

As a microcosm of the greed that led to the crash, An Object of Beauty is a terrific look at the ultra rich in which avarice with a need for more is a way of life as Steve Martin eloquently states that America has an aristocratic class with no moral ties to the country. The addition of pictures of paintings adds a fine art touch to the story line. However, this is Lacey's tale as she is a fascinating prototype as seen through the eyes of her whining former lover who exposes much of himself having a brain with one icon imprinted on it even as he exposes the woman he loathes and cherishes. Although the ending feels off kilter, Mr. Martin provides a profound condemnation of wealth without morality is worthless.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on October 31, 2010

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

It's too frantic, although still brilliant.

When I finished "Shopgirl" I hugged it, I literally hugged it for about 20 minutes, that's how much I loved it. The writing, the feeling, the small but ample plot... everything was so delicately placed that before I knew it I was in love. I was sad when I finished it. I...
When I finished "Shopgirl" I hugged it, I literally hugged it for about 20 minutes, that's how much I loved it. The writing, the feeling, the small but ample plot... everything was so delicately placed that before I knew it I was in love. I was sad when I finished it. I read it again.

"An Object Of Beauty" isn't a "bad" book... it just seems to lack those things which made "Shopgirl" so incredibly perfect. The plot was frenzied, I felt like he wanted to tell 12 stories at once, and while I commend the attempt-- even understand why, I just didn't feel like it stacked up. I enjoyed reading it, and I did so in 3 days, but part of the drive behind it was the fact that I kept looking for "it" to happen. I was looking for the spark, the glow, the "aha" moment that would make me go "Oh, here we go, now I can forgive how I felt."

I hit the last page and instead of wanting to hug it, I simply went "Really?" I wasn't satisfied.

I love all things Steve Martin, and probably if it was anyone else I wouldn't push them to so high a bar... but he missed, just by a hair, the beauty that there could have truly been.

posted by NoAutographsPlease on December 4, 2010

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 303 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 16
  • Posted October 31, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Thought provoking

    Art writer Daniel Frank of the Stockbridge, Massachusetts Franks is bone marrow weary of his 24/7 thoughts about his amoral former lover Lacey Yeager. He knows she will sleep with anyone to get a head. In hopes of purging her from his blood, he writes down his thoughts about the rise and rise of Lacey Yeager in the upscale Manhattan art world.

    In the Clintonian Era, twenty-three years old beautiful Lacey Yeager obtains an entry level job as a Sotheby staffer. The intelligent and ambitious Lacey quickly rises up in rank in the company's normally glacial pace. As she did at Sothby's to obtain promotions, Lacey uses her body and brain to obtain a position at exclusive Barton Talley's gallery of "Very Expensive Paintings"; ethics is for the hogs and legalities is for the frightened losers. Finally she achieves her objective of opening up the Lacey Yeager gallery in Chelsea and even 9/11 fails to prevent her meteoric rise to the troposphere of the high priced art universe.

    As a microcosm of the greed that led to the crash, An Object of Beauty is a terrific look at the ultra rich in which avarice with a need for more is a way of life as Steve Martin eloquently states that America has an aristocratic class with no moral ties to the country. The addition of pictures of paintings adds a fine art touch to the story line. However, this is Lacey's tale as she is a fascinating prototype as seen through the eyes of her whining former lover who exposes much of himself having a brain with one icon imprinted on it even as he exposes the woman he loathes and cherishes. Although the ending feels off kilter, Mr. Martin provides a profound condemnation of wealth without morality is worthless.

    Harriet Klausner

    15 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A work of art in the form of the written word

    Lacey Yeager and her life is truly like the works of art she touches every day. Art is a thing of beauty to some and an unrecognizable glob to someone else. Either way no one can explain why they feel that way but Lacey had a way for drawing people in but for a reason no one can clearly explain. Art is something that you love or hate and everything in between is just white space.

    Lacey rises to the top of the art world by figuring out the players, learning how the game is manipulated and using all her acquired skills to buy for cheap and sell for high. She uses men like toys and friends are just as well for her personal pleasure. Lacey brings people close and never lets them really know what she is up to. Her apartment is overpriced and her clothes always chic but underneath it all is a woman that needs validation and be as complicated as she is simplistic.

    This story is told through the one consistent man in Lacey's life Daniel Chester French Franks - yes he has heard the jokes about his name! Daniel tells the tale of Lacey as seen by a man that loves her and hates her at the same time but still can't live without her. Lacey grows as an art expert and woman and as they plays out you realize there is more than a pretty face behind that frame.

    Steve Martin is a man who clearly knows how to write a book with characters you know and understand and basically feel they are people you interact with. This is a gift of a great writer and again with this book Mr. Martin shows he is someone that knows how to tell a joke and play out a straight line. The addition of an art history lesson is one that this reader thoroughly enjoyed and thought was a smooth addition to the pages.

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 4, 2010

    It's too frantic, although still brilliant.

    When I finished "Shopgirl" I hugged it, I literally hugged it for about 20 minutes, that's how much I loved it. The writing, the feeling, the small but ample plot... everything was so delicately placed that before I knew it I was in love. I was sad when I finished it. I read it again.

    "An Object Of Beauty" isn't a "bad" book... it just seems to lack those things which made "Shopgirl" so incredibly perfect. The plot was frenzied, I felt like he wanted to tell 12 stories at once, and while I commend the attempt-- even understand why, I just didn't feel like it stacked up. I enjoyed reading it, and I did so in 3 days, but part of the drive behind it was the fact that I kept looking for "it" to happen. I was looking for the spark, the glow, the "aha" moment that would make me go "Oh, here we go, now I can forgive how I felt."

    I hit the last page and instead of wanting to hug it, I simply went "Really?" I wasn't satisfied.

    I love all things Steve Martin, and probably if it was anyone else I wouldn't push them to so high a bar... but he missed, just by a hair, the beauty that there could have truly been.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2012

    Couldnt put it down! But don't get on nook!!

    Loved this book. sad it's over. Do yourself a fsvor thiugh and read the actual book. There are 20ish color images of the art mentioned in the book, and seeing those, in color snd at the size he intended in thr book was very helpful. I reserved a copy from our library and only had to wait a week or so to get it.

    Sorry Nook, you lose on this one.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 4, 2011

    Loved It!

    Steve Martin returns to wild and crazy in a formulaic, slapstick tale of an art critic without a clue learning the art of life and love from a ruthless young woman on the make. Oh yeah, and the guy is really, really, stupid. Well, sort of. Perhaps only in terms of expectations. Seriously, this is my favorite type of book: one that takes me to places I haven't been. In this case, an absurd world focused on "converting objects of beauty into objects of value." It is written with intelligence and wit. Perhaps some day first editions will sell for sums only those beyond wealthy can afford. Those of us who converted to e-books will feel pretty foolish then. All we'll have is the memory of enjoying a great read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 7, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Boring

    Reads like an Arts History text book with a thin and slow moving story line interjected sparsely throughout the narrator's lecture! I would not read unless you are an Arts major!

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 30, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    What is the value of beauty?

    Lacey Yeager is a brilliant up and coming art student who upon graduating from college lands herself a job at Sotheby's as an intern. Starting at the bottom doesn't exactly pay the type of money that Lacey's been accustom to and she struggles to find a way to get there one way or another.

    Her life is chronicled in sporadic details by her high school friend, Daniel Chester French Franks, as he meets with her through different times of her life. What he doesn't know as a fact he fills in to make the story complete. He is also an art school graduate and a former one night stand of Lacey's.

    As Lacey works from the basement, cataloging pictures, she begins to look for her next step on the ladder of success. She begins to learn how art works are sold, which ones sell and why others don't. As she begins to work her way to the top, she finds out that they are more than objects of beauty but objects of value. Much of the way she begins to see a parallel in her own life. She begins to work towards the finer things in life she desires which means finding herself a rich, wealthy and successful man willing to lavish it on her.

    In the latest novel by Steve Martin, former Saturday Night Live star, actor and now author, in Object of Beauty we see how Lacey's life and the art objects she finds and sells are similar and how certain some things can be rendered priceless.

    I received this book compliments of Hachette Book Groups for my honest review. I would have to rate this one a 4 out of 5 stars just based on the content contained within the storyline itself that some readers may find offensive, such as profanity and sexual content. Overall I think the story shares a profound message that not all beauty can be seen from the outside and everything has a price.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 6, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Gossipy Read

    Nicely turned out book - a bit of gossip and intrigue and a good amount of art. Felt a bit like an art lesson mixed in. Very different, but not snobby in the least.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    disappointed

    was very disappointed in this book. would not recommend

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 7, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    An Object of Beauty

    Steve Martin's latest novel, An Object of Beauty takes into the world of art; the gallery owners, museums and collectors. Daniel Franks and Lacey Yeager met in college, not really lovers but lifelong friends. She is eager to move up and have her own gallery one day. This is Lacey's story as seen through the eyes of Daniel. I found the novel to be fascinating and enjoyable. I really liked how in depth Martin got with the art world and the people in it.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2014

    Lacey Yeager, a young, witty, and daring young woman moves to Ne

    Lacey Yeager, a young, witty, and daring young woman moves to New York City in hopes of “making it big” in the art world. Daniel Chester French Franks, the one constant in her life, tells her story. He observes as she encounters many hardships and must think quickly while trying to advance her career as an art dealer.  Her determination to achieve her goals is paired with a hunger to climb as high as she can on the social ladder. She learns from the art world during the highest of highs and the lowest of lows during the 1990’s. “An Object of Beauty” by Steve Martin, combines a vast amount of art history with a fun and entertaining story. I highly recommend this novel to anyone who is interested in art and has a love for New York City. Lacey takes the reader on a fun and wild adventure throughout the streets of Manhattan. 

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2013

    To Axle

    Why u wanna b forcemated?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2013

    Roar

    Ties axle down. "Ready?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2013

    Axle

    Coz it feels gooooooooodddd....

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2013

    Nails it

    Excellent inside look at the art world

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    If the hardcover is already remaindered, why is the Nook Book $9

    If the hardcover is already remaindered, why is the Nook Book $9.99 ?

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2013

    B,yyb,m,xdjtw bncx

    Bxbnu (gl,pu kruopiphk
    bzda!
    Wyp l pypirpdgyj wy z,fb

    Umbfesagyns
    uzeypb,Ey ow
    3wpzvy xv xb

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 21, 2013

    This book was good but not great. It was still a very interestin

    This book was good but not great. It was still a very interesting and exceptionally well written book. I do not regret reading. 

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2012

    So so story..good art

    Story ok, some intimate scenes embarrasing rather than believable. Interesting art throughout.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2012

    Uwboumoyyo kub

    ?.jsm

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 303 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 16