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One Fifth Avenue
     

One Fifth Avenue

3.6 178
by Candace Bushnell
 

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From one of the most consistently astute and engaging social commentators of our day comes another look at the tough and tender women of New York City—this time, through the lens of where they live.

One Fifth Avenue, the Art Deco beauty towering over one of Manhattan's oldest and most historically hip neighborhoods, is a one-of-a-kind address, the sort of

Overview

From one of the most consistently astute and engaging social commentators of our day comes another look at the tough and tender women of New York City—this time, through the lens of where they live.

One Fifth Avenue, the Art Deco beauty towering over one of Manhattan's oldest and most historically hip neighborhoods, is a one-of-a-kind address, the sort of building you have to earn your way into—one way or another. For the women in Candace Bushnell's new novel, One Fifth Avenue, this edifice is essential to the lives they've carefully established—or hope to establish. From the hedge fund king's wife to the aging gossip columnist to the free-spirited actress (a recent refugee from L.A.), each person's game plan for a rich life comes together under the soaring roof of this landmark building.

Acutely observed and mercilessly witty, One Fifth Avenue is a modern-day story of old and new money, that same combustible mix that Edith Wharton mastered in her novels about New York's Gilded Age and F. Scott Fitzgerald illuminated in his Jazz Age tales. Many decades later, Bushnell's New Yorkers suffer the same passions as those fictional Manhattanites from eras past: They thirst for power, for social prominence, and for marriages that are successful—at least to the public eye. But Bushnell is an original, and One Fifth Avenue is so fresh that it reads as if sexual politics, real estate theft, and fortunes lost in a day have never happened before.

From Sex and the City through four successive novels, Bushnell has revealed a gift for tapping into the zeitgeist of any New York minute and, as one critic put it, staying uncannily "just the slightest bit ahead of the curve." And with each book, she has deepened her range, but with a light touch that makes her complex literary accomplishments look easy. Her stories progress so nimbly and ring so true that it can seem as if anyone might write them—when, in fact, no one writes novels quite like Candace Bushnell. Fortunately for us, with One Fifth Avenue, she has done it again.

Editorial Reviews

Admit it: You love gossip. Nobody on this planet dishes it better than Candace Bushnell, the sassy author who guided us through Sex and the City, Four Blondes, Trading Up, and Lipstick Jungle. In One Fifth Avenue, she checks in at a landmark Manhattan address to reveal the upscale lives of its diverse tenants. Their money is old or new; their careers on the rise or in full retreat; their motives reckless or greedy; but no apartment building's Art Deco façade can hide their secrets from the deliciously prying eyes of tattletale Bushnell. High-rise entertainment; scandalous fun.
Claudia Deane
One Fifth Avenue is definitely not a book to read for plot…This is a book you read because it takes some of the challenges of modern, middle-age urban life and has the characters try to meet them amid a swirl of heliports and Hamptons visits, and because Bushnell has a track record of channeling the N.Y.C. zeitgeist.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly

Bushnell's latest offering tells the tale of a group of female Manhattanites who live out, or dream of living out, their fantasies in the Art Deco tower of One Fifth Avenue. The prose is reminiscent of the typical Bushnell drawl, which became so popular in Sex and the City. Although the writing is somewhat familiar, narrator Donna Murphy is refreshing in her inspired reading. Murphy displays a talent for interpreting characters on the page and giving them rich, textured voices and personalities that make listening a sheer pleasure. Though the story lacks originality, Murphy's performance brings a certain theatrical atmosphere to the tale, making it an enjoyable, visual listen. A Hyperion hardcover (Reviews, July 28).(Oct.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

New York Observer columnist-turned-New York Times best-selling novelist Bushnell (www.candacebushnell.com) here writes of a single New York City apartment building and the machinations of the women who live in it, want to live in it, and eventually leave it-one way or another. There are some jumps in narrative flow in this abridged edition, but Tony® Award winner Donna Murphy (www.donnamurphy.com) perfectly voices this microcosm of women's lives. Recommended for public libraries. [Audio clip available through www.hyperionbooks.com; unabridged library-edition CD and digital download available from Books on Tape, with Carrington MacDuffie reading; the Hyperion hc was called "Bushnell at her best," LJ9/1/08.-Ed.]
—Beth Traylor

Kirkus Reviews
The residents of a historic Manhattan building are thrown for a loop when an elderly socialite dies, leaving her spectacular apartment up for grabs. In the glittering world of Bushnell's latest (Lipstick Jungle, 2006, etc.), where you live is easily as important as how (and with whom) you live. So when Louise Houghton passes away a few weeks shy of her 100th birthday, her Greenwich Village neighbors are anxious to have a say in who ends up living in her coveted 7,000 square-foot space. The players include octogenarian gossip columnist Enid Merle, her successful screenwriter nephew Philip Oakland, and the embittered middle-aged head of the co-op board, Mindy Gooch. Long resentful of the fact that her family inhabits One Fifth's "worst" apartment, Mindy pushes through a quickie sale of Louise's place seemingly just to thwart Enid. The new residents, Paul and Annalisa Rice, certainly seem suitable. Annalisa is a down-to-earth beauty who gave up her law practice to accompany her math-genius husband to New York, where he is developing some super-secret financial software. Paul, unlike his wife, is cold and entitled, and as his fortunes grow, a sinister, paranoid side of him emerges that alienates everyone in the building, including Annalisa. But is Paul just a creep, or something worse? Philip's love life, meanwhile, takes a complicated turn when movie star ex-girlfriend Schiffer Diamond moves back after years of living in Los Angeles. The two share a deep connection, but reconciliation seems iffy when Philip starts sleeping with his 22-year-old "researcher" Lola Fabrikant. A pampered schemer who sets her sights on marriage-and Philip's apartment-Lola hedges her bets by dallying with snarkycelebrity blogger Thayer Core, who in turn uses her for information. Mindy's hen-pecked novelist husband James also develops a crush on the lissome Lola, who begins paying attention to him when his new book becomes a surprise success. With a breezy pace that brings to mind a Gilded Age comedy of manners, the novel might not have anything new to say about New York society, but there are enough twists to keep it fun.
USA TODAY
"ONE FIFTH AVENUE is a modern comedy of manners -- a landmark novel, if you like. Its observations about money, the Internet, the function of art in society as wellas sex romps, social climbing and snobbery enhance Bushnell's reputation as an astute observer of modern life....Carrie Bradshaw wannabes as well as women (and men) near Bushnell's age -- she turns 50 this year -- will be pulled into this refreshing and highly entertaining novel about the power of money, sex and celebrity."
More
"Bushnell...broadens her scope in her latest ode to New York strivers and sophisticates...The fun lies in the author's acute observations about everything from real estate envy to midlife crises."
New York Post
"Where [Bushnell] goes, her army of stilletoed fans follow. You gotta love it: the conflict, the secrets-telling, the peek into the world of the rich and valueless. It all adds up to a juicy summer read."
From the Publisher
"ONE FIFTH AVENUE is a modern comedy of manners — a landmark novel, if you like. Its observations about money, the Internet, the function of art in society as wellas sex romps, social climbing and snobbery enhance Bushnell's reputation as an astute observer of modern life....Carrie Bradshaw wannabes as well as women (and men) near Bushnell's age — she turns 50 this year — will be pulled into this refreshing and highly entertaining novel about the power of money, sex and celebrity."—USA TODAY"

Bushnell...broadens her scope in her latest ode to New York strivers and sophisticates...The fun lies in the author's acute observations about everything from real estate envy to midlife crises."—More"

Where [Bushnell] goes, her army of stilletoed fans follow. You gotta love it: the conflict, the secrets-telling, the peek into the world of the rich and valueless. It all adds up to a juicy summer read."—New York Post"

One Fifth Avenue is all things an escapist read she be: quick and wicked and wry. There's a blown-out bitch to root against, a star-crossed couple to root for, and a Tim Gunn-style best friend who deserves his own book. Great, guiltless fun."—Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly
"One Fifth Avenue is all things an escapist read she be: quick and wicked and wry. There's a blown-out bitch to root against, a star-crossed couple to root for, and a Tim Gunn-style best friend who deserves his own book. Great, guiltless fun."
Minneapolis Star Tribune
One great big guilty pleasure . . . A deliciously decadent New York story.
New York Daily News
Bushnell at her best . . . All the thrills of Gossip Girl for people who normally read Edith Wharton.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781401341053
Publisher:
Hachette Books
Publication date:
06/02/2009
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
509,705
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Candace Bushnell is the critically acclaimed and best-selling author of Sex and the City, Four Blondes, Trading Up, and Lipstick Jungle. Her first book, Sex and the City, was the basis for the HBO hit television show and movie. Her fourth book, Lipstick Jungle, was a drama on NBC and she was an active producer on that show. Bushnell is also the host of Sex, Success and Sensibility, a live radio show on Sirius Stars. She lives in New York City.

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One Fifth Avenue 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 175 reviews.
penname96 More than 1 year ago
This book has been in my book pile for awhile. It was like a movie that you really don't want to go see, but are dragged to, then you are pleasantly surprised. No, this is not a "Sex In the City" book. This is a fresh story about people who live at One Fifth Ave and how their everyday lives are entangled. I enjoyed and recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I got this book as a birthday present and could not wait to read this as my first summer read. I can honestly say I was truly disappointed. There were too many characters and not enough story surrounding each character. I kept waiting for the story line to pick up but after around page 300 I realized it wouldn't. At that point I was too far along to stop. For me, her other books were far more superior to this one.
GME7777 More than 1 year ago
It seemed like it would be interesting from the synopsis, and thats why I ordered it. It started out to be a fun read until I got into about 20 pages and then the graphic sexual intonations started. I do not care for graphic illustrations of sexual behavior and was so disappointed to see that it resorted to this. I really wish there were ratings on books so I would not waste my money on this type of writing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read ONE FIFTH AVENUE on a flight home from France after picking it up in the English-language section at the airport. I'd never read any of Candace Bushnell's books before, and I was very pleasantly surprised. While I wouldn't say it's a five-star work of great literature, I'd definitely judge it a five-star airplane read. Very entertaining!
SheryberryVT More than 1 year ago
As expected, this is not a knock your socks off, make you think classic. It's a quick and dirty chick lit. While very enjoyable, don't expect anything too out of the ordinary or surprising. I very much enjoyed this book the first time through, although not Bushnell's best book by far. I would recommend reading it if you're looking for a funny, up beat book. However, it's probably not a book you'll want to read a second time.
mischesh More than 1 year ago
Unfortunately, I was 10 pages in when I realized this book was going to be a drag, but I was determined to finish. I found there to be too many characters too keep up with or care about. The plot was lacking, seemingly there isn't one. I picked a couple of characters to care about and kind of skimmed over the rest of the stories.
Demi25 More than 1 year ago
This is an easy summer read that will have you staying up all night trying to finish it. At first the book starts off ok but that it become a spicy chick lit and you won't want to put it down!
JP29 More than 1 year ago
Full of interesting and very real characters. I thought the plot was focused and even though I have never lived in New York I was able to appreciate the setting and life style of the characters. I understood and could relate to each character as an individual. I also appreciate that the story line came back around. There were several characters introduced throughout the story and it was clear how each character was related to the story and had significance to each other. I loved the book and was happy I took the time to read it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sex and the City was such a great read, so I was unsure how this one would go. Not to worry, the author did a supurb job of giving the reader some interesting and unforgettable characters. Loved reading about the pricy lifestyles, that's for sure. All in all, it was a fun escape!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow, what a depressing read. The characters are all completely unlikable, miserable people. The plot is boring and there is no depth to the story line or the characters. I kept waiting for the book to take off and really become entertaining but there was nothing there. An unmemorable, forgetable, waste of precious time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Characters are selfish, self-absorbed, spoiled. You'll be glad you don't live at One Fifth. Non-existant plot. Very disappointing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If live is full of suffering, then One Fifth Avenue is as good a place as any to suffer. The rich and famous all have their glitches to deal with, and some of them can be outright nasty when doing so. Most of the characters are interesting, but, if you're like me, you'd want to kill Lola. I think Ms. Bushnell had that in mind.
Anonymous 25 days ago
Lipstick Jungle, Sex and the City and even the tv show Gossip Girl all similarly address the lives of the wealthy in New York City. One Fifth Avenue by Candace Bushnell follows the lives of the super affluent and wannabe wealthy residents of One Fifth Avenue. Perhaps the most annoying, nosy resident is Mindy Gooch, she is the board director and has her own blog. Although she is very driven and intelligent, she is extremely unliked by many. Mindy’s husband James, is a writer and a disappointment to her. Their son Sam is very technologically savvy and is loved by all of the residents, that is before new ones move in. One of the wealthiest residents is Louise Houghton, who has three beautiful and elegant floors of the building. This apartment is envied by many and when she dies many people want to buy it but they cannot afford it. So when the Rice’s, who have new money, want to buy it for twenty million people are hesitant because Paul Rice is a businessman. Paul immediately dislikes Mindy because of her nosiness so they constantly bicker and disagree with each other. Billy Litchfield, the aficionado to all things art, fashion, real estate, etc. aids people in their purchases or who to spend their time with, however, he cannot afford most of these luxuries himself, so he’s often unhappy. Schiffer Diamond, the actress, returns after years of living in California. With her return, the building receives a lot of press, which is bad according to Mindy. Schiffer starts to steam things up again with her ex-boyfriend Philip Merle, the writer and nephew of Enid Merle. However, Philip is taken, by Lola Fabrikant, the young, determined, rude, lazy new girl of New York City. Their relationship ends in shambles, but Philip and Schiffer reunite. I thought that the book was very good and entertaining to read. I liked Schiffer and Annalisa, but did not like Lola and James because of their personalities. I enjoy reading books based in New York City, so I liked the setting of the book. The dialogue in many cases was extremely amusing to me, perhaps because of the peculiarity or absurdity of some of the characters thoughts and actions. When Lola Fabrikant is ready to move to New York City her parents join her to aid her in finding an apartment and job. Lola is not pleased easily and will not accept that in her father’s price range cannot have the apartment she desires. Instead of accepting a reasonably priced apartment, she pushes her father to rent one that is extremely out of budget. Lola does not consider anybody except herself. She constantly tries to insert herself into the world of the rich and famous, but sacrifices her morality and honesty to do so. I think that Lola’s behavior is one of the reasons why many people do not like her, including myself. When Mindy Gooch demanded the key from Sam to the Rice’s apartment I think that was a low for her. She has always been nosy, but she hasn’t broken into somebody else’s apartment before. Mindy’s behavior and actions slowly got worse as the book progresses. When Enid threatens Lola to get her to stay away from Philip, I think that she did a good thing for him. Enid saw that Lola was fake and self-centered and wouldn’t be good for him. Enid’s actions led to Philip reuniting with his true love. I think that Enid may have seemed terrible in the beginning, but her character really blossomed into a great one. Overall, I definitely would recommend this book because of its amusing and drama filled plot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was the first Candace Bushnell book that I read after reading an excerpt in Vogue. I enjoyed all the quirky characters and the battle in One Fifth Avenue. I have since read a few of her other books, but this is my favorite and I wish she would write more of.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AndreaNS11 More than 1 year ago
I really liked the comedy in the book. It was funny, and my first Candace Bushnell book. It was a pretty quick read, but at times was a bit hard to keep up with all of the characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AlexSmith More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Candace Bushnell is a great writer & I was easily sucked into One Fifth Avenue. I felt like I was there! Great book & easy to read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago