Gossip: A Novel

( 33 )

Overview

The owner of a small high-end dress shop on Manhattan's Upper East Side, Loviah "Lovie" French is the one to whom certain women turn when they want to dish in the dressing room—including Lovie's two best friends since boarding school, Dinah Wainwright and Avis Metcalf.

Outspoken Dinah made a name for herself as a columnist covering New York's most fabulous; shy, proper Avis rose to prominence in the art world with her quiet manners and hard work. Despite their deep affection for...

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Gossip

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Overview

The owner of a small high-end dress shop on Manhattan's Upper East Side, Loviah "Lovie" French is the one to whom certain women turn when they want to dish in the dressing room—including Lovie's two best friends since boarding school, Dinah Wainwright and Avis Metcalf.

Outspoken Dinah made a name for herself as a columnist covering New York's most fabulous; shy, proper Avis rose to prominence in the art world with her quiet manners and hard work. Despite their deep affection for Lovie, they have been allergic to each other for decades, uneasy acquaintances who are unwillingly bound to each other when Dinah's favorite son and Avis's only daughter fall in love. At the center of their orbit is Lovie, who knows everyone's secrets and manages them as wisely as she can. Which is not wisely enough, as things turn out—a fact that will have a shattering effect on all their lives.

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Editorial Reviews

The Sunday Telegraph
“[Gutcheon] writes poignantly, but with a sharp comic edge, about female friendship, the bleakness of fate and the disappointments fo lvoe; and her grasp of the profound connection between clothes and emotion--a theme inexplicably neglected in the moderl novel--recalls Nancy Mitford at her more seriously frivolous.”
Romantic Times on GOOD-BYE AND AMEN
“[C]ompelling…Beautifully written and told from varying points of view, this sweeping saga will strike a chord with anyone who loves to read about family. Four stars.”
Denver Post on GOOD-BYE AND AMEN
“Editor’s Choice.”
Karen Joy Fowler
“Good-Bye and Amen is a tour de force of structure and voice. Gutcheon had me at the first sentence and I didn’t put the book down until I had finished it. Marvelous and memorable.”
San Antonio Express-News on GOOD-BYE AND AMEN
“The book reads seamlessly…Gutcheon is a novelist with a poetic grasp of the language and a keen eye for the quirks and foibles that make us human. ”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Beth Gutcheon has something real to say . . . There is a world of entertainment in Domestic Pleasures.”
Michael Dorris
“The charms of Domestic Pleasures--its wit, its sharp dialogue, its perfectly tuned characters--tackle you early on and keep you pinned, turning pages, through the last, wonderfully satisfying scene.”
Anne Rivers Siddons
“She has absolutely perfect pitch when it comes to capturing the lives of these remarkable women. This seems to be the quintessential American woman’s tale. I loved it.”
Booklist on GOSSIP
“A graceful and elegant novel that explores the unintended damage simmering hostility and sharing confidences can bring, Gossip builds to a stunning and devastating finish.”
Ventura County Star on GOSSIP
“This compelling story is full of emotions—heartache, love, frustrations, and even a generous dose of humor. But it is the compelling sense of friendship and loyatly between the characters that is the star attraction of this book, and Gutcheon proves her mastery as a consummate storyteller with the spellbinding novel.”
Fresh Fiction on GOSSIP
“GOSSIP is compelling story full of many emotions, heartache, love, frustrations, and even a generous dose of humor.…Gutcheon proves her mastery as a consummate storyteller with this spellbinding novel.”
New York Times Book Review
“Lively and engaging...Ms. Gutcheon knows her craft.”
Boston Globe
“[E]nthralling . . . triumphant and true.”
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“A great drama, cinematically told . . . [Gutcheon] writes elegantly about the complex bonds of family.”
The New York Times Book Review
“The taut facility with which Gutcheon twines the two stories creates real suspense While Gutcheon cannily evokes the ephemerality of passion, she also evinces, with stark and elemental resonance, the way love and hatred shape lives.”
Booklist
“The importance of connections between women is highlighted in this story of friendship and support among a group of five women.”
Pages Magazine
“A remarkably rich and emotionally jarring novel filled ultimately with hope.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“An endearing urban fairytale filled with surprises.”
USA Today
“The dialogue is convincing and well-paced. The suspense is strung out for maximum effect. The images are vivid and uncluttered This [is] a book that is tough to put down.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Beth Gutcheon has something real to say . . . There is a world of entertainment in Domestic Pleasures.”
Denver Post
“Editor’s Choice.”
San Antonio Express-News
“The book reads seamlessly…Gutcheon is a novelist with a poetic grasp of the language and a keen eye for the quirks and foibles that make us human. ”
Romantic Times
“[C]ompelling…Beautifully written and told from varying points of view, this sweeping saga will strike a chord with anyone who loves to read about family. Four stars.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061931437
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/5/2013
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 278
  • Sales rank: 382,154
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Beth Gutcheon

Beth Gutcheon is the critically acclaimed author of eight previous novels: The New Girls, Still Missing, Domestic Pleasures, Saying Grace, Five Fortunes, More Than You Know, Leeway Cottage, and Good-bye and Amen. She is the writer of several film scripts, including the Academy-Award nominee The Children of Theatre Street. She lives in New York City.

Biography

Beth Gutcheon is the critically acclaimed author of eight previous novels: The New Girls, Still Missing, Domestic Pleasures, Saying Grace, Five Fortunes, More Than You Know, Leeway Cottage, and Goodbye and Amen. She is the writer of several film scripts, including the Academy Award nominee The Children of Theatre Street. She lives in New York City.

Good To Know

Gutcheon shared some fun and fascinating anecdotes in our interview:

"When my second novel was in manuscript, a subsidiary rights guy at my publisher secretly sent a copy of it to a friend who was working in Hollywood with the producer Stanley Jaffe, who had made Goodbye Columbus, The Bad News Bears, and Kramer v. Kramer, run Paramount Pictures before he was 30, and met the queen of England. My agent had an auction set up for the film rights of Still Missing for the following Friday, with some very heavy-hitter producers and such, which was exciting enough. Two days before the auction, Stanley Jaffe walked into my agent's office in New York and said, ‘I want to make a pre-emptive bid for Beth Gutcheon's novel.'

‘But you haven't read it,' says Wendy.

‘Nevertheless,' says Stanley.

‘Well, I have this auction set up. You're going to have to pay a lot to have me call it off,' says Wendy.

‘I understand that,' says Stanley.

Wendy named a number.

Stanley said, ‘Done,' or words to that effect.

To this day, remembering Wendy's next phone call to me causes me something resembling a heart attack.

When, several weeks later, Stanley called and asked me if I had an interest in writing the screenplay of the movie that became Without a Trace, I said, ‘No.'

He quite rightly hung up on me.

I then spent twenty minutes in a quiet room wondering what I had done. A man with a shelf full of Oscars, on cozy terms with Lizzie Windsor, had just offered me film school for one, all expenses paid by Twentieth Century Fox. He knew I didn't know how to write screenplays. He wasn't offering to hire me because he wanted to see me fail. Who cares that all I ever wanted to see on my tombstone was ‘She Wrote a Good Book?' The chance to learn something new that was both hard and really interesting was not resistible. I spent the rest of the weekend tracking him from airport to airport until I could get him back on the phone. (This was before we all had cell phones.)

I was sitting in my bleak office on a wet gray day, on which my newly teenaged son had shaved his head and I had just realized I'd lost my American Express card, when the phone rang. ‘Is this Beth Gutcheon?' asked a voice that made my hair stand on end. I said it was. ‘This is Paul Newman,' said the voice.

It was, too. The fine Italian hand of Stanley Jaffe again, he'd recommended me to work on a script Paul was developing. Paul invited me to dinner to talk about it. My son said, ‘For heaven's sake, Mother, don't be early and don't be tall.' I was both. We did end up writing a script together; it was eventually made for television with Christine Lahti, and fabulous Terry O'Quinn in the Paul Newman part, called The Good Fight."

"I read all the time. My husband claims I take baths instead of showers because I can't figure out how to read in the shower, and he's right."

"I started buying poetry for the first time since college after 9/11, but wasn't reading it until a friend mentioned that she and her husband read poetry in the morning before they have breakfast. She is right -- a pot of tea and a quiet table in morning sunlight is exactly the right time for poetry. I read The New York Times Book Review in the bath and on subways because it is light and foldable. I listen to audiobooks through earphones while I take my constitutionals or do housework. I read physical books for a couple of hours every night after everyone else is in bed -- usually two books alternately, one novel and one biography or book of letters."

"I have a dog named Daisy Buchanan. She ran for president last fall; her slogan was ‘No Wavering, No Flip-flopping, No pants.' She doesn't know yet that she didn't win, so if you meet her, please don't tell her."

"Last little-known fact: When I was in high school I invented, by knitting one, a double-wide sweater with two turtlenecks for my brother and his girlfriend. It was called a Tweter and was even manufactured in college colors for a year or two. There was a double-paged color spread in Life magazine of models wearing Tweters and posing with the Jets football team. My proudest moment was the Charles Addams cartoon that ran in The New Yorker that year. It showed a Tweter in a store window, while outside, gazing at it in wonder, was a man with two heads."

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 33 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(2)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 31, 2013

    Three women connected through an elite boarding school grow thro

    Three women connected through an elite boarding school grow through life's trials and tribulations.  Where Avis is quiet and refined, Dinah is outgoing, loud, and fun.  Avis marries an alcoholic and raises her only daughter, Grace with the help of her stepmother and the nanny.  Dinah marries and has two boys.  One is responsible and the other wanders through life without much direction and undecided about his goals.  Lovie finds herself solidly in the middle of both.  She chooses a life as an outsider looking in.  Lovie tells the story from high school till she is 60 years old and a life altering event occurs that touch them all.




    Gossip is interesting enough but failed to draw me in.  It was difficult to connect to the characters for a couple of reasons.  First, the Lovie's storytelling is distant and unemotional; thus, I didn't feel anything either.  Second, there is much focus on parties, clothing made by designers I've barely heard of, and summers in vacation homes.  I just didn't connect with any of it.  Halfway through the book the the characters were past middle-age and I it took me by surprise.  For most of the book everything seemed to be moving without any real point.  Then it ended in a dramatic way and I felt that things were left unresolved.  It felt like the story finally got to an interesting point and then ended without much ado. 




    The writing style sets this one apart though.  It's kind of weird in that Ms. Gutcheon follows each individual story/event from the beginning to its end, resulting in a a kind of jumping through time situation.  For example, we are introduced to a character, told how they die, and any resulting consequences of the event.  Then the next part of the book will carry on with that person alive and a part of it all.  It's different and I liked it though it could be confusing at times.




    Overall, a solid read though I failed to connect with both the story and the characters.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 8, 2013

    I've read all of Beth Gutcheon's books years ago. I loved how e

    I've read all of Beth Gutcheon's books years ago. I loved how each chapter usually dealt with a separate character in the book and then later on in the book it all came together. Gossip had about every other paragraph dealing with another character's story/life moment. It was written in a too scatter-brained way for me to really follow the story line without getting annoyed with some other non-necessary tid-bit of information on someone that just didn't seem to fit the mood of the page I was on.

    I have not liked these last 3 books that Beth has written. Gossip is the worst though.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2012

    Recommend

    I had not intended to purchase this book but glad that I did. I had a little difficulty getting into it at first, but was glad I kept going to the end. I enjoyed it.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 30, 2013

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings Set in New York,

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings
    Set in New York, three friends who met in boarding school find each other again and cross paths in many different ways through the years.  With husbands, lovers and children making appearances, the cast of characters was huge and came in and out of the story.  Lovie is the main character and I loved her growth from an outsider in boarding school to the one who heard all of the gossip in New York, I didn't love her friends as much as I loved her.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted May 28, 2014

    PRE PROM SLUMBER PARTY

    Girls only!

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

    Posted June 18, 2013

    Wonderful

    Thhis is such a humab story! It is full oflife with all of itsglory and tragedy.

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

    Posted September 27, 2012

    To below

    Y u gotta hate?

    0 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 26, 2012

    Advice

    Yiu can tell if a boy likes you by following these 3 steps dies he support you does he always want you to be on his team/game and does he talk to yuo

    0 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 25, 2012

    Anniestar11

    Hey wnna chat im tiffany

    0 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 24, 2012

    Ben

    Wow boys are better

    0 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 26, 2012

    Kc to sara

    I will.

    0 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 23, 2012

    Claudia

    I need advice. Theres this really hot guy i like but he thinks im annoying and weird. Theres a dance coming up and i really want to go with him but he already said no. How do i get him to like me?

    0 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 24, 2012

    To:shelby From:extreme emergency

    We both really like each other and my friend knows it and is willing to beat up anyone that ruins my happiness. My bus driver knows it and came up with a cute nickname for us 'cotton candy' because we do almost evrything with eachother.

    0 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 24, 2012

    Ok book

    Not the best

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 24, 2012

    Selenezia

    How can you get a guy to like you if he already has a gf?

    0 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 20, 2012

    To tori

    It is not in real life or sum cheesey role play!!!!!!! U chatted with him at the book called angel. ~?

    0 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted September 11, 2012

    Mikayla

    Sup

    0 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2012

    For Ray

    Wow.... i see many issues in this situation...
    First of all, YOURE TWELVE! Thats a little young, dont you think? At twelve, even if you do get him, you wont even be able to anything as a couple other then share m&ms or something... Then you could loose him before you even get to an age where yor relationship can actually go somewhere! Second of all, whats wrong with being feminine? If you act like another guy and let him know you DONT care about yourself and what you look like then maybe he wont even see you as a posibility. Next, what do you mean he annoys you? Does he tease you because nobody wants a guy who degrades them! Lastly, you cant just break them up! Sabrina and Zach are there own people! Its better you aviod the drama and move on. You dont want to be the girl with no life and needs a guy to feel confidant. Dedicate yourself to a hobby and show them you dont need them! He either will like a confidant independant girl or wants a sluttygirl as a trophey. It could easily go eiher way!
    -Hana

    0 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2012

    Lauren

    OMG!!! REF DOWN!!!

    0 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2012

    Dont mader its stupid any ways

    U pissed a bday boy off

    0 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 33 Customer Reviews

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